It’s refreshing to hear experimental music that celebrates pop music in all its rosy-hued glory, with nary a trace of preciousness, pretentiousness, or irony. While Jonathan Rauberts and Kristen Sonntag bring a fair bit of experimentation to their music as Surrender the Spirit, any sonic bells and whistles serve the music, which can be a delicate line for any musician to walk. On their new EP Premonition the hook reigns supreme, but just like ABBA had a real progressive bent 40 years ago—something not many people are aware of today—there’s an open-mindedness to adventure that makes this record, which you can listen to below, all the more charming.
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French pianist and composer Emilie Levienaise-Farrouch is set to release her debut album Like Water Through the Sand 13 November on 139701, the experimental arm of the esteemed UK record label FatCat. The beautiful “Strelka” can be heard below, and as Levienaise-Farrouch explains, it brings resolution and optimism to the record.
Kevin Korber: Honestly, Chromatics’ next album could be Kill For Love, Part 2 and I would still be solidly on board. Fortunately, Johnny Jewel is a smarter and better songwriter than that, and “Shadow” indicates one of those subtle reinventions that highlights aspects of his music that listeners hadn’t thought about before. Even if “Shadow” is a one-off, it’s one worth having on “repeat” for the next few weeks. [9/10]
Combining the ornate beauty of chamber music, the intricacy of Persian music, and the force of heavy metal, Canadian duo the Visit will be releasing the stunningly beautiful new album Through Darkness Into Light on 9 October. It’s all about the interplay of virtuosic cellist Raphael Weinroth-Browne and vocalist Heather Sita Black, and as you hear on the epic composition “Through Darkness”, the two show spellbinding chemistry.
Influenced by the likes of Rihanna but with a keen ear for the darker, more gothic side of electronic music, Michigan native Alexa Lusader makes a strong impression on her new single “La La Love Me”, from her upcoming EP. Producer Cody Tarpley, best known for his work with R&B singer SoMo, gives the track the minimalist treatment, its thunderous beat underscored by the subtlest hint of synth, providing Lusader with ample room to sell the track with her emotive singing.