Saint Clair today releases ‘I’ll Stay’, the final track to emerge from her new EP release, ‘D2’, also out today. Both releases are issued via Saint Clair’s own Dearly Beloved imprint, which takes its logo from a drawing sketched her grandfather, the artist Feliks Topolski. Stream I’ll Stay’ here, and stream ‘D2’ here.
Saint Clair – named after her mother’s Scottish ancestry – is the alias of French-speaking North Londoner Emma Topolski. The first in a family of painters, actors and journalists to pursue music, her professional trajectory began as a gigging jazz singer, as she puts it, “Playing three or four times a week, getting ignored in the corner of a five-star hotel”. A testing stint, it now more than repays itself in Saint Clair’s easy integration of a love for old standards, soul (Stevie Wonder) and classic rock (The Beatles), with her affinity for the electronica-rooted modern soul of the likes of Son Lux and James Blake.
With a brooding, taut opening which gives way to the emphatic, disarmingly honest promise of the track’s chorus, ‘I’ll Stay’ captures Saint Clair’s strong, dynamic vocal enabled by sparing production from Blake (Pusha T, AlunaGeorge, Rita Ora, Aftermath) and long-time collaborator I/O. Speaking about the track, Emma says; “’I’ll Stay’ is about wrestling with your demons, trying to keep a sometimes irresistible urge under control. But also about hope and the promise of victory.”
‘D2 follows Saint Clair’s 2017 debut EP ‘D1’, and arrives alongside wilder collaborative projects which have taken her on the road as a backing vocalist for long-time friend Laura Marling (in whose Reversal Of The Muse project she also participated, alongside HAIM, Dolly Parton and Marika Hackman), and seen her sing BVs for Ghostpoet and Dua Lipa. Emma has also supported Bastille on their most recent arena tour, as singer and bassist in emerging, Radio 1-supported rockers Childcare.