It was while shirking her duties as an arts and culture guide copywriter that Natalie Bouloudis found the seed that would sprout into her debut single. Initially derived from a story she wrote on the job (she wrote various poetry and prose compositions to pass the time), ‘Burning Pier’ is set in a fictionalised amalgamation of the burnt-out husks of Brighton, Hastings and Eastbourne piers. Essentially a meditation on how disasters can both evoke nostalgia and make us question our future in a new light, Natalie conjures all the energy and drama of narrative songwriting forebears like Nick Cave, PJ Harvey, and Kate Bush, while stylistically existing in a sphere of her own. The song was recorded in a live take with the only overdub being drummer Hannah Stacey’s sparkling Rhodes piano. As such, it has all the thrilling tension of a group capturing the thunderclap spontaneity of perfect live communication.