In what is the first of eleven new tracks to be released in 2015 by Kotomi, the pseudonym of LA-based artist Lauren Hillman, the singer tackles the loss of “two amazing women,” as Hillman tells GvB. That context gives “The Last Time” a heartbreaking core, one that the rising singer has no choice but to embrace.
The song’s opening synths and drummer Jo Pusateri’s steady pattern shares the longing, nostalgic tone of singer Katy Perry’s smash hit “Teenage Dream,” before Hillman sings on the chorus, “I didn’t know it was the last time we’d talk.” She’s accompanied by a noticeable crunch of electric guitars during that moment, a welcome deviation from the song’s propulsive verses. “Don’t grieve for me, I breathe,” she sings as the song closes. In the face of great loss, Kotomi comes to terms with life’s fragile nature. There’s no time for grief. Only relief.