“Who cares about nice complexion and perfect hair?” Elle King wonders on her biting new track “Naturally Pretty Girls,” a fist-pumping takedown of those who get to glide through life a little too easily.
The third song to be released from King’s second LP Shake the Spirit, “Naturally Pretty Girls” — cowritten by King and Death Cab for Cutie’s Ben Gibbard — takes aim as much at the injustices of the social order as it does at the ostensible subject of the song. Jealousy certainly isn’t what she has in mind when she growls, “I’m sure they just get up every morning and be boring and beautiful.” Following the swagger of previous release “Shame,” “Naturally Pretty Girls” is crunchy and defiant, but, much as the chiming keys help soften the scuzzy guitar, there’s a vulnerable side to King’s manifesto, as she laments, “Nature wasn’t kind to me.”
In between those two songs came the release of “Good Thing Gone,” a smoldering post-breakup dirge that helps fill in the emotional breadth of Shake the Spirit, which will be released October 19th via RCA Records. King appears at this weekend’s Pilgrimage Festival in Franklin, Tennessee, before embarking on a fall tour next month that includes dates in London, England, and at Austin City Limits Festival in Austin, Texas.