Chvrches' rarely clutter their tracks. Lauren Mayberry's melodies are constructed and deployed so well that Iain Cook and Martin Doherty can focus entirely on subtle synth flourishes, rather than bold shifts in tone. At their best, the songs seem to grow organically from the static. So "Down Side Of Me," from their second album, 2015's Every Open Eye, was already spare and affecting before the band released a reimagined version of it this morning. What we have now is the song at its purest: everything pitched down, muffled piano chords instead of synths, swells of church-reverb guitars, heartbeat drums.
The new version of the song comes with an appropriately intimate video, directed by Personal Shopper actress and Chvrches fan Kristen Stewart, who spoke to the New York Times about the project earlier this week. "I had been asking them to let me do something for them for a while," she said. "They're so good. I ended up with a pretty simple but definitive narrative arc that highlights the cause in a sweet but quiet and confronting way."
The collaboration is a part of the brilliantly named "7-inches For Planned Parenthood" project. Other contributions to the series are set to come from Bjork, Mary J Blige, Bon Iver, and dozens more.
Alex Robert Ross is on Twitter.