Mad Hawkes releases her brand new debut EP Undone filled with restless energy, her trademark style of ‘Babe Rock’ and a message of female empowerment.
Having grown up in the beautiful surroundings of South Beach California Maddi Hawkes (aka Mad Hawkes) spent a lot of her time in the sun, surfing and chilling out in her VW. Her time on the West Coast has heavily influenced her style. Memories of perfect sunsets, drinking on the pier and Mexican food were all factors that inspired her and helped her develop her voice.
After working as an intern at Parts + Labour Records, Maddi was encouraged to write her music with brutal honesty. She discovered her own style which she describes as ‘Babe Rock’ guided by Amy Winehouse and Karen O (Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs!) Maddi wants her music to be empowering women and fill them with courage.
Mad Hawkes’ songs are written to give other women confidence which is incredibly powerful. She unapologetically tackles her own tales of confusion and conflict and isn’t afraid to tell you the gritty truth. Her new EP Undone is a reflection of what it feels like to be a woman in your early to mid-twenties, including all the confusing, conflicting, uncomfortable and heart wrenching unavoidable moments.
Maddi describes the EP as ‘Loose gravel’: “Loose gravel implies losing your footing, trying desperately to get it back but knowing, in the end, you’re going down and it’s probably going to hurt. You will get up your wounds will heal and you will find some new clothes.”
“I’m still in the midst of the ‘loose gravel’ stage of my life, but every time I heal and change my clothes the gravel gets more compacted and it’s not as easy to slip.”
The first track on the EP ‘Face Punch’ starts with an 80’s inspired electronic synth which slowly builds and is layered with a pounding drum beat. Maddi’s gentle vocals are introduced to the track and become distorted matching the moaning electric guitars and synths in the hook backed by the robotic refrain of “punch, punch”. It’s a catchy first track that serves Maddi’s goal of female empowerment.
Her second song on the EP, ‘Fantasy’, was released as a single earlier this year. In this track, she accepts ownership of her faults. The song sparkles filled with West Coast harmonies, pumping keys and a squashed bass line which gives the track a funky edge.
‘Bleeding Out’ begins with a calm synth allowing you to fully receive Maddi’s vocals. The track ebbs and flows from a gentle almost haunting sound to a glittery electronic, cacophonous, filled synth song.
Groove-laden basslines kick off the ‘Mistress’ leading into funk-filled synths above a thundering bassline. The electronic style really compliments the emotions visible in her vocals in ‘Mistress’, building and slowing down just at the right moments to truly capture the intensity of this track.
Closing the album ‘Used To Be Mine’ opens with distorted, looming synths followed by Maddi’s eerie vocals. The track quickly shifts from this to an upbeat glitzy, pop-laced track. ‘Used To Be Mine’ has an undeniable funky bassline, which shows off another string to Maddie’s bow. The track spins off into the distance as it draws to a close, signifying the end of the album.
Undone is an incredibly strong debut album for this rising star. Not only does she explore her self-described style of Babe Rock, but also demonstrates her confidence and inspiring stance on female empowerment.