Artist in Focus: Noah Cyrus

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Living largely in the shadow of her older sister Miley, Noah Cyrus is an artist who has been making subtle waves in the music industry with a slow release of genuinely captivating singles. Singing primarily in pop, country or a hybrid between the two, Noah’s unique voice and stripped back musical accompaniment has made her an artist with an easy-listening style as well as being one mostly left underappreciated. With the potential to dominate the music industry like her big sister, Noah Cyrus’s slow release of singles still has our ears pricked to see what comes next.

It all started with the release of the phenomenal ‘Make Me (Cry)’ in collaboration with Labyrinth. Released in 2016, the first mainstream single wasn’t necessarily a huge hit, but it made enough waves to kickstart Noah’s career and eventually managed a Platinum certification. With a starkly unique voice and proving much more than a copy and paste of her sister, it paved the way to the release of two new solo singles (‘Stay Together’ & ‘I’m Stuck’) before her first next genuinely great song, ‘Again’ with XXXtentacion. Soulful and breathy, Noah’s voice became a soothing listen with her pitch-perfect ‘again’ lingering in the background of the song’s moody quality, only accentuated when you had it on repeat. It’s the song where Noah Cyrus could finally be identified by her voice alone, signature with her seamless ability to hit high notes along with her synthy pop beats.

In 2017 Noah became an opening act for Katy Perry during the American leg of the Witness: The Tour tour, attaching herself to yet another big pop name in the process. Following that, in 2018, Noah released her first EP, Good Cry, before headlining it as her first tour across America. As a small tour, it became a celebration of her first major release outside of the realm of singles. While it only received moderate praise and recognition, it was still a highly anticipated release for her fans, and it became a glimpse into what a Noah Cyrus album would look and sound like. It generated buzz and racked up a modest amount of listens on streaming services while Noah only continued to release more singles throughout the year alongside it.

However, despite establishing herself as a competent artist who could support herself, Noah continued to favour making music with collaborators rather than as a solo artist. Collaborating with stars like LP, Leon Bridges and MØ, Noah has always been close to stardom and musical accomplishment (not forgetting her father is Billy Rae Cyrus after all). As a lead artist on 16 songs, Noah has been the only vocalist on only five of the songs, these songs being her more stripped back and acoustic songs and probably her most memorable. From the solo rendition of ‘July’ (2019) to ‘Lonely’ (2019) and ‘I Got So High I Saw Jesus’ (2020), these songs have been when Noah’s country roots are most celebrated. Often just her and the acoustic guitar, Noah’s voice carrying the weight of the song as well as its poignancy – never better heard in the ‘Topanga (Voice Memo)’ that is included in her EP. It was the songs where Noah really shines as an artist, as she defies generic sounds and keeps things simple yet beautiful, encompassing an aspect of a singer-songwriter with a lot more depth than her older sister has managed in recent years.

Focusing on where Noah Cyrus is now, she’s just finished The Not So Tour, Tour and released the single ‘I Got So High I Saw Jesus’. With a successful year of singles last year, one can expect the same thing this year along with the possibility of her first major LP. At this stage, it’s all guesswork, but we can rely on that whatever song comes next, it’ll be just as new and exciting as her previous music. Noah Cyrus hasn’t had the chart-topping success she deserves. However, ranking 227th on the Spotify charts with over 13.5 million listeners a month, she’s slowly proving herself as an artist to watch for in the coming months.

Noah Cyrus’ latest single is out now via Columbia.

 

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News Editor 20-21. A second-year English student with a passion for absolutely everything (but especially literature and drama) apart from his degree.

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