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Song You Need: Poppy Ajudha yells back at an infuriating world on “NO!”

The south London-based artist’s latest single brings soul and rage together.

August 10, 2022

The FADER’s “Songs You Need” are the tracks we can’t stop playing. Check back every day for new music and follow along on our Spotify playlist.

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Poppy Ajudha only released herdebut album The Power In Us earlier this year but sometimes circumstances demand action. New song "NO!," arrives at the perfect time, taking the south London-based vocalist's conscious songwriting from controlled and smooth into something more impolite and hard to ignore. "I'm still raging," she sings over a turbo-charged bassline, "won't hold back."

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Exactly what has set Ajudha off isn't the question. More like what hasn't? References to online trolling, untrustworthy politicians, and a neverending culture war are raised, adding gas to the fire that you imagine was already burning inside her. As an LGBTQ woman, Ajudha finds stength in this moment from a position of vulnerability. By owning her own version of events and refusing to bow down to the expectations of others she's able to find her own way forward. "NO!" isn't a victory lap, more like a howl into the void and a spirited message to others to follow her.

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Song You Need: Poppy Ajudha yells back at an infuriating world on “NO!”