Hampshire-based Hairy Hands, the multi-instrumentalist/producer/singer known to his human friends as James Alexander Bright, has a healthy obsession with space travel, otherworldly wonders, and complex funk music. His forthcoming debut Magic tells the story of humanity’s post-apocalyptic search for a new habitable planet, and groovy cut “YNA” takes a moment to acknowledge the loneliness one can feel in such a relocation. Sure, the refrain (“Why do you have to walk around and say / I’m all alone? / You’re not alone”) is creepy without context, but the breakbeat funk enveloping Bright’s lyrics shows that this song is in fact a celebration of extraterrestrial life.
The self-deemed intergalactic voyager is joined by an eclectic and impressive group of friends on his upcoming record, including musicians from Stereolab, MF Doom, Portico, and Laurel Collective, and guest vocals from indie singer/songwriters Roseau and Peter Lyons, some of whose influence is immediately recognizable on “YNA.” Laden with spaceship synths and spastic rhythms, the track bounces like a soul-infused collaboration between Flying Lotus and Toro Y Moi might — you certainly wouldn’t guess the artist’s rural Hampshire residence from his music alone.
“‘YNA’ is a party track about aliens,” Bright matter-of-factly informs SPIN. “Having grown up watching cartoons and movies based on creatures and super humans from other parts of the universe it opens your imagination. People have written about the early Egyptians having come from another planet. Those pyramids!”