Maria Kelly Reckons with Self-Doubt and Struggle on New Single “eight hours”

By Clare Martin

We’re often our own worst enemies. Even when we try to reach out for help, something holds us back, telling us that whatever trouble we’re experiencing isn’t that difficult and that, in some fucked up way, we’re not worthy of the pain we’re feeling. 

Maria Kelly’s latest single, “eight hours,” touches on this strangled, stymied feeling with her signature humour and grace. 

Speaking on the song’s subject, Kelly says, “You convince yourself that it’s just one single thing, and that if you could just find it, fix it, get over it – everything would be ok again. Ironically, through that process of invalidating, there’s so much pressure, guilt and shame, which just sends us further into that spiral.

“eight hours” single art

“It’s a cycle I think a lot of us fall into, because it’s really hard to give yourself permission to struggle. I spent a really long time fighting against my own experience. Feeling down or lost always equated to ‘not trying hard enough’. I was always on the hunt for something to fix, but I’m constantly reminding myself that nothing is inherently ‘broken’ – so there is nothing to fix in the first place.” 

The track, out today via VETA Music, floats on plucky, playful guitar. Kelly’s honeyed voice is warm as a fresh cup of tea as she gently insists: “I swear I try, I do / I do, I do, I do.” “eight hours” is another thoughtful instalment ahead of the alt-folk artist’s debut album, which is due out in autumn of this year. She crafted the record while holed up in a cottage on our island’s southern coast.

Listen to “eight hours” below.