"If I Knew" is the ninth track on Bat For Lahes' fourth album, The Bride. It was released as the final single from the album on 16 December 2016.
Described by Natasha as "the true love song" on the album, it's the moment of The Bride story where she finds self-love:
I think If I Knew […] is like the true love song on the album and it sort of – not an anti-love song at all – I can’t think of how to phrase it, but it’s sort of the resolution of, the antithesis of romantic, heightened, superficial love, and it’s almost like a thank you letter to her lover for kind of helping her through this journey. So it’s kind of the deepest form of unconditional love – so for me it’s hard to listen to that, it’s kind of tearful.
In a interview with BBC Radio 4, she gave a detailed description of the song:
It’s like a thank you love letter to her dead boyfriend. It’s the moment in the story where she realises what true love is and it’s actually not what she thought. She’s thanking his spirit for sort of accompanying her through this journey of self-discovery, and shining and beaming unconditional love on her. And she always felt that he was very happy and supportive of her to go on this journey to actually realise that once she loves herself she will be open to move forward in a much more matured, grounded, and three-dimensional place.
And so: ‘If I knew what I know now / I would never turn it back around / Wrong or right, you held me up to the light / The mountain had a mirror inside – that’s the place she's going – and where I was going took time.’
The mountain having a mirror inside lyric is a metaphor to finding yourself, finding self-love.
By the end of the story, she does reach this peak. It’s got this Wizard of Oz, Emerald City thing where she gets to this place that he’s mapped out for her a honeymoon map. And the mountain slights open and it’s just a mirror and she just sees herself. It's quite emotional, I feel quite sad just talking about it [laughs].
The song was released on 7'' vinyl on 16 December 2016.
- "Becoming The Bride With Bat For Lashes". 2016. Pilerats.
- "Bat For Lashes; Losing a baby in pregnancy or birth". 6 July 2016. BBC Radio 4.
- "If I Knew//In Your Bed vinyl artwork sneak peak". 14 December 2016. Instagram.