“Liar” is just the latest confection from these gifted songwriters. Before it was chosen to accompany the most thrilling, resonant choreographed sequence of High Strung Free Dance, it was a centerpiece of Tragedy Of Physics, the most recent Hooked Like Helen EP. The five-song set, which was released this summer, drew accolades from The Line Of Best Fit, which lauded the group’s “alt-pop chaos” and Nikki Stipp’s “classic” vocals. CLASH Magazine agreed, praising the band’s “uplifting, bouncy, and addictive” music. Theirs is a modern sound, but they’ve got roots deep in the singer-songwriter tradition – and their songs have emotional heft and sincerity that’s rare in music of any style.
And while this gorgeous power ballad might not be the sort of song you’d expect to hear at a modern dance performance, it’s not hard to see why choreographer Tyce Diorio of So You Think You Can Dance chose “Liar” to score his epic ballet scene in High Strung Free Dance. Hooked Like Helen’s music has similar hallmarks to those associated with the ballet: grace, poise, and passion.
There’s plenty of gripping footage from High Strung Free Dance in the “Liar” clip, which premiered via Radio Disney’s Twitter. The star of the video – and the movie – is classically trained ballerina Juliet Doherty, who has danced on Broadway, at Radio City Music Hall for the Christmas Spectacular, and on the big screen in Driven To Dance. Her co-stars are no less accomplished, and no less videogenic: Thomas Doherty (who starred as Harry Hook in Disney’s Descendants 2 and 3), Harry Jarvis, and the legendary Jane Seymour in the role of an uncompromising but warm-hearted stage mother. They’re all present and center in the “Liar” video, and the heat they generate is considerable. Yet the footage of Hooked Like Helen is, unbelievably, just as compelling. Nikki Stipp plays and sings with the sort of self-possession and inner strength that any ballerina would envy.