Methyl Ethel—the musical project of Western Australian artist Jake Webb—announced its new album, Are You Haunted?, to be released February 18th on Future Classic. The nine-track album features today’s new single, “Proof” featuring Stella Donnelly, as well as previous singles “Neon Cheap” and “Matters.”
“Proof” is the first ever Methyl Ethel song to feature an additional singer: in this case, fellow Western Australian art-pop stalwart and one-time Methyl Ethel guitarist, Stella Donnelly. It’s “a song about truth and movies,” offers Webb, a meditation on what constitutes reality in the post-Trump, post-climate-crisis, post-COVID era, in which science and fiercely-guarded fantasy go head-to-head in the realm of public discourse. But where other Methyl Ethel songs might lean into the blurriness of life and belief, “Proof” struts along as a glittery, funk-infused polemic against nonsense. Webb and Donnelly, tongues-in-cheek, daring the listener to “take a chance on proof (if you want to).”
The collaboration feels natural, almost inevitable. “Stella is one of the most truth-telling artists I’ve ever heard,” comments Webb. “It made for a perfect match.” Donnelly continues, “Working on ‘Proof’ with Jake felt like being invited to the set of your favourite movie, such an insightful and wonderful experience.”
The “Proof” video directed by Webb, is a playful, monochromatic affair that takes cues from German Expressionist film and explores the symbolism of black-and-white thinking and the fluidity of “truth” as a concept.