It is often said that perspective shapes reality, and if your mind purports negative trains of thought it can be a constant battle to break free from the insidious insecurities they breed. It’s this inner struggle to free the mind from the clutches of self-doubt that Brisbane songstress Hazel Mei addresses with compassion and candour on her soothing new single It Is(n’t) Real, out 12 September.

Inspired by the sophisticated storytelling and quaint style of acts like Boy and Bear, Norah Jones, and Angus and Julia Stone, Hazel’s latest musing is brave and beautiful in its vulnerability, and sonically comforting with its lulling indie-folk sentimentality.

“I was inspired by many things when I wrote It Is(n’t) Real,” said Hazel.“I’d just started university, surrounded by new people and experiences. I was going to my first music festivals hoping to immerse myself in new music. Despite all the exciting things happening around me, I found myself feeling out of place and unsure of myself.”

It Is(n’t) Real is an introspective reflection about the impact and power your mind has over your life; my own insecurities were constantly getting in the way. I wrote the song in the hope it would help me find the confidence I was lacking. The lyrics are written from the hopeful side of myself and in a lot of ways it has helped.”

Illuminating the often illusion-like beliefs for what they are – illusions – Hazel’s It Is(n’t) Real is a reminder that the power to change how we see ourselves, lies within us. It’s the first track to be released from her forthcoming debut EP, which fans will get a preview of at her single launch show at Brisbane’s The Flamin’ Galah next week.

“I have a few exciting things planned for the launch. I’ll be playing a brand-new song from the EP, as well as selling my first batch of merchandise that includes tote bags designed by my good friend Gabriella Rosie which I can’t wait to show off. Then, later this year I’ll be releasing another single and heading back into the studio to finish the EP.”

Cathartic, charming and candid, It Is(n’t) Real is just the beginning of Hazel Mei’s exciting journey.

Stream Hazel Mei’s candid new single It Is(n’t) Real exclusively below, before it drops tomorrow, 12 September. Hazel launches It Is(n’t) Real at Brisbane’s The Flamin’ Galah on 20 September. All event info HERE.