Willow Shields
Willow Shields

Music photographer and journalist based in South London.

I find it hard to put into words how YNESUsed to Be’ makes me feel, but I will attempt to. You know that feeling you get when you think about how much you’ve grown up, about how you were when you were 16, and then you start to think of all the moments you’ll never have again. That’s how ‘Used to Be’ feels. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and the perfect soundtrack for delving into a reminiscent downward spiral. It’s YNES showing she can do simply everything, it’s definitely a change from her usual vibrant tunes, but it comes as a welcomed surprise. It’s a masterful, tear-jerking display of emotional vulnerability, and it gives me goosebumps on every listen. 

The song itself delves into YNES’ specific past experiences, but that, I think makes it all that much more relatable. We’ve all stayed out too late and missed the last train, got too drunk, and then still made it home last night without a single idea how we got there. At a time where everyone’s reminiscing on their childhoods and growing up, ‘Used to Be’ comes at the absolute perfect time. It’s a slow, solemn song with the perfect amount of YNES kick at the end. It is truly a show of how much range YNES has as an artist, to be able to do mostly everything and do it with such integrity and individualism is something we don’t see a lot, but when we do… it’s amazing and it’s YNES.


Listen to ‘Used to Be‘: