Lorde’s story about discovering Talking Heads is pure pre-teen melodrama brilliance 

The pop star has contributed a cover of the band’s ‘Take Me To The River’ to a new compilation


There’s a new Talking Heads compilation on the way, paying tribute to the band’s seminal concert film Stop Making Sense and its soundtrack album, and it’s positively stuffed with some of modern music’s most interesting artists. 

Among them is Lorde, releasing her first official piece of music since 2021’s ‘Solar Power’ and its accompanying EP of Māori-language takes on those songs. The Kiwi pop star has covered ‘Take Me To The River’, slinking through the track with high allure. 

In an email newsletter, the musician shared a brilliant story about her pre-teen discovery of Talking Heads to mark the occasion. “OK, it’s 2008,” she writes. “I’m 12 years old, eyes painted black, jaw blasted with acne. My bedroom is a nest of posters, broken toys, street signs. I’ve kissed with tongue.” 


She continues to describe herself as “beginning to ooze out in every direction” and feeling “a constant burning urge to express myself”. “My mother, an artist herself, sees the ooze,” she shares. “She brings her laptop into my room one night and puts on a YouTube video. It’s grainy, 240p at best. In the video, I see a band from another time performing on a TV show. The lead singer wears a suit, has high cheekbones and slicked-back dark hair. 

“He is a preacher, a controlled fire, a wild animal. He’s moving like I’ve never seen anyone move, and his eyes are rolling back in his head. He knows how it feels to kiss with tongue. The wifi signal drops in and out from downstairs.” 

Lorde credits seeing Talking Heads for the first time with opening “a portal” between her and the screen and filling her with “humour, lust, rhythm and ritual”. “I don’t understand what I’m feeling, but I do understand that the band in the grainy video live with the same strangeness that I do,” she says. “My palms tingle. My insides are replaced.” Maybe if you listen to her version of ‘Take Me To The River’ above, you’ll feel the same way. 

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