Watch Jae Stephens in the Beautiful, Trippy Video for “Headlights”

Watch Jae Stephens in the Beautiful, Trippy Video for “Headlights”

Jae Stephens doesn’t sing straightforward love songs. On her first single, last June’s mellow-pop “24K,” she saw the boy across from her as “a risk I have to take;” on “Every Time” she obsessed with a “no good” kid: “not thinking straight, but I won’t complain.” The darkness flooded in on her last release, “You Love That,” a song just as sultry as anything that had come before, but far knottier lyrically. There, she gleefully fed someone else’s masochism: “You think you can take care of me / But boy, you should be fucking scared of me / And you love that, I know you love that.”

Now, after working with producers like Bruno Major, Jam City, and Jonah Christian, the 20-year-old LA resident is ready to break out. “Headlights,” premiering today through Soundcloud X Noisey Video Singles, is another slow-burning R&B track, building up from distant, percussive synths, relaxing into a soft-trap chorus. But despite its “boy, come my way” refrain, it’s still got an eye fixed on the void: a car controlled by a seemingly suicidal driver, blocked blessings, “sunlight in the dust.” Watch the video for “Headlights” at the top of the page.