Posts Tagged ‘dark pop’

May 29, 2018

As if we aren’t already insanely excited for Lykke Li’s new album ‘so sad so sexy’, the Swedish artist has gone ahead and dropped off these two new treats to stir us into a wild frenzy of agitated anticipation. Sex Money Feelings Die could very well be our favorite song off the album that we’ve heard so far, even though we’re very much in love with Hard Rain, Deep End, and Utopia. Synthpop meets R&B soul on the tune, co-produced by Jeff Bhasker. It even boasts a sparse and spacious trap beat. It’s obvious Lykke Li is going for a more urban influenced sound on her forthcoming full length. Accompanying that gorgeous tune is a collaboration with Portland hip hop sensation Aminé named ‘two nights’ which you can stream below. Lykke’s new music is like Banks’ dark R&B pop meets the tenderness of Wet. We’re not complaining. ‘so sad, so sexy’ arrives June 8th via RCA. Pre-order, here.

May 18, 2018

It’s happened! It’s finally, finally happened! Barring another sudden delay (the last one being Valentine’s Day a few years ago, when Johnny Jewel reportedly destroyed the recordings due to being the perfectionist we’re glad he is), Chromatics’ Dear Tommy is on its way into our outstretched arms, uh, ears! The album is due to arrive this fall via Italians Do It Better, and this welcome news, worthy of much revelry, is accompanied by brand new single Black Walls. Sure, it hasn’t been a complete Chromatics drought these past few of years. After all, we were treated to the music Jewel wrote for Twin Peaks: The Return last year as well as the band’s delightful cameos on the show. But Dear Tommy has been a long time coming, and now Black Walls reminds us exactly why we’re going to be a forever fan of the band. Dark droopy synthpop and ominous italo-disco exude morbidly romantic, sweetly tortured vibes. As always, we lose ourselves in Ruth Radelet’s soft dreamy voice. We gladly stay there, lost in the Chromatics, as we wait for a definite release date for Dear Tommy.

May 16, 2018
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Beautifully haunting doesn’t even begin to describe Tula’s latest single, Bullet. The Berlin based Swedish songstress offers up some dusky aching electronica and pop after having captivated us with her exceptional voice and exquisite minimalist pop for the past several years. That’s right, the first time we ever featured Tula was well over five years ago, when she riveted us with a now gone for the interwebs performance on Berlin Sessions. Bullet’s sparse soundscape is punctuated by glitchy trembling sonic patterns and trip hop styled percussion, all tied together by Tula’s vocal performance. Its gossamer and opaque production is reminiscent of Marian Hill’s future pop fused with Sevdaliza’s sinuous twisting music. Bullet is a ghostly and near-macabre ballad whose music video is fittingly crepuscular and austere. Watch the film below. 

May 14, 2018

After teasing us with a cryptic video and leaving us near breathless from our growing anticipation for new music, Lykke Li shared two stupendous new tunes last month, including a collaboration with Rostam named ‘hard rain’ and a song named ‘deep end’ produced by some very talented artists. They were our first tastes off new album ‘so sad so sexy’, out June 8th on RCA. Just as we hoped, the beloved Swedish indie/art pop artist has followed the songs up with a brand new treat over the weekend. Watch the heartwarming video for ‘utopia’, directed by Clara Cullen. Actual footage of a young Lykke Li and her mom, as well as clips of her with her son are utilized in the video. Both her intimate video and her sanguine song are incredibly moving, especially with Mother’s Day having just passed. Despite its soft glow, there’s a dark melancholy to be found in ‘utopia’, especially towards the end… It’s a truly familiar timbre for fans of Lykke Li’s music. Pre-order new album ‘so sad so sexy’, here.

May 10, 2018
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Girls, if we were music, would we be salty synth barbs, caramelized into spicy ashes and dripping with curvy, fiery beats? Maybe not all of the time, but for a moment, that’s exactly what “Girls” are, as we take in UK singer songwriter Salt Ashes’ dark electropop anthem. Her new single is ravishing per usual, and brimming with mettle and moxie, a smoldering bop which Salt Ashes describes is about a situation many of us can relate to. She explains it’s about:  ’…

when someone makes an assumption that you want more than just friendship based on their interpretation of how you act or dress. The track is about breaking the stereotypes of people who want to express themselves and their sexuality freely without the “slut shaming” or being told that they’re “asking for it”.’  This is a more than relevant topic as the world contemplates the #MeToo movement, so often countered by victim blaming. Salt Ashes new song is sizzling hot, and so are some of us foxy girls and how we like to dress. Don’t be vain, it’s not about you. Salt Ashes’ Girls is available from iTunes, here.

May 9, 2018
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We love what Turntable Kitchen has been doing with various artists, teaming up with them to release full covers of classic albums and artists on vinyl. The latest such ear turning foray involves Washington, D.C. indie duo GEMS, who’ve chosen to cover John Lennon’s LP Imagine in its entirety. Crippled Inside is the latest single they’ve shared from the project. We never expected to hear Lennon in quite such a fashion, but GEMS has created a gorgeously dark electro/alt-pop rendition of Crippled Inside, inflected with shades of breathy Phantogram and hints of Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill. Deliciously warped synths adorn the sensuously bewitching cover. GEMS’ cover of John Lennon’s Imagine is available exclusively from Turntable Kitchen’s SOUNDS DELICIOUS vinyl subscription service, here.

May 2, 2018
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DC-based duo CUTTS was a more than fortuitous find from my daily music discovery adventures. It only took a few seconds for me to know the pair’s new single The Way Out is not only phenomenal, but it’s just the kind of atmospheric indietronica and alt pop that renders my heart total mush. Take a listen and tell me this somberly stirring, beautifully windswept single isn’t deeply affecting. Perhaps that’s why the band’s name is CUTTS, they cut through our heart like a knife through butter with their push and pull of this exquisitely poignant song. Slivers of R I T U A L’s dark evocative, mournful haunting songs and some of Daughter’s ethereal grandeur course through The Way Out. The truth is, we never want to find our way out of this stunning world that CUTTS has drawn us into. With my curiosity piqued and my affection sparked, I made sure to delve into CUTTS’ previous releases. Stream Entertain Me below, a potent and cinematic extension of the stately eloquence found on The Way Out, but more urgent and intense. The Way Out is available via Toneden, here.

April 30, 2018
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It’s been years since Adrian Lux dropped his hit single Teenage Crime. A bevy of fine remixes cropped up in its wake, too. Swedish multi-instrumentalist and producer STRØM brings back our love for the song with a superb cover that injects the song with a fresh sense of sultry dark intrigue. The sooty splendor of this murky, dusky Teenage Crime is rather deliciously Zhu-like, with some of the curling funk guitars of Ben Khan. STRØM’s electrifying cover seems to befit a mysterious tryst, or a secret rendezvous of some sort. You can also stream the track via Spotify, here. Re-visit some of the artist’s prior originals on Soundcloud, here, including previously featured releases Shay-Ling and Mesmerize.

April 26, 2018

As if we need more proof that musicality could very well be genetic, Sophie Simmons, daughter of legendary Kiss member Gene Simmons, has dropped a spectacular first single named Burn Me Down. She’d previously lent her powerhouse vocals to electronic releases and served up some sensational covers, but on Burn Me Down, she goes full speed ahead with her sonorous voice and a dark moody, vigorously scorching brand of pop. And Sophie is already putting together a debut full length album for later this year, too. 

April 26, 2018
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Exhibitionist is a true exhibit of hypnotic electronica and futuristic pop. The Sydney based solo project created by multi-instrumentalist Kirsty Tickle, also known for her role in Party Dozen, has shared a third ravishing single named Sway, entrancing us with her silky synths, mesmeric trip hop beats, and acrobatic vocals on the song, out now on Future Classic. Sway was co-written with prolific producer LUCIANBLOMKAMP, and produced by long term collaborator Jonathan Boulet. The dark entangling track explores the tension between wanting to be vulnerable with someone while also guarding yourself against heartbreak. Stream/download, here.