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When life gets ugly, it’s helps to have someone at your side to help fight back. Or, in Benjy Ferree‘s case, throw the first punch.

“Brave Woman,” the second single from the D.C. expat’s new album, Cry-Fi, is an ode to those people in your life. A synth-heavy soulful, lo-fi pop ballad of sorts, Ferree sings of a “brave woman” to throw the first punch when things get ugly, even if she’s the one that starts the fight.

Like Cry-Fi‘s first single, “New Man,” “Brave Woman” also signals Ferree’s musical reawakening: After 14 years in D.C., Ferree moved to New Orleans a couple of years ago to start over, and his new record is a reflection of that. “I went into survival mode when I made the record,” he told WAMU’s Bandwidth. Unlike the music video for “New Man,” which was filmed at Showtime in Bloomingdale with Ferree’s D.C. friends, the stark black-and-white, Jim Jarmusch-like video for “Brave Woman”—which was directed by Anthony Dominici and shot by Drew Stubbs—was made entirely in New Orleans.

It’s a mysterious, intoxicating song, and Ferree’s hazy lyrics (“I am all for equal rights / I’ll take the punches for you / Even though you start the fight / Before I eat the last bite”) barely hint at the song’s deeper meanings. In an email, Ferree is even more oblique about what it’s about: “I couldn’t possibly attempt an explanation of the song, but it’s from the heart,” he writes.

Benjy Ferree plays on May 29 with Pearie Sol at Black Cat’s Backstage. 7 p.m. $12