Begonia - "I Don't Wanna (Love You)" (Independent): The name may be new, but the voice isn't. Begonia is the new solo project of Winnipegger aka Alexa Dirks, who is a Juno winner via her work in Chic Gamine.
She has quickly gained attention as a solo artist, with NPR listing her as one of the Ten Canadian Artists You Need To Know and CBC Music calling Begonia one of the Best New Bands of 2016.
Earlier track “Juniper” reached #1 on CBC Radio 2’s Top 20, and she delivers another winner here. It will be featured on her upcoming album, Lady In Mind, set for a Feb. 10 release.
In a press release, Begonia explains that “I Don’t Wanna (Love U)” is a song "about not fully understanding how to let go of someone while also understanding that you can't and shouldn't have them in your life anymore. A few years ago Matt Schellenberg [Royal Canoe] sent me this sample idea he had been working on and we sat down and wrote the lyrics together. I was going through a messy breakup at the time and liked the idea of having more aggressive and emotional lyrics against such an upbeat production backdrop. It's basically the best I could do at writing a ‘diss-track’. I'm not very good at confrontation, or ‘diss-tracks’.”
As Begonia, Dirks is forging a hybrid sound, one strongly rooted in classic soul, yet also quite contemporary in its production.
Definitely an artist to be reckoned with.
She will hit the road beginning Feb. 6 in support of the album, including a Feb. 9 performance in Toronto at The Drake. Itinerary here.