BANKS – “Gemini Feed” (Singles Going Steady)

This an absolutely gorgeous vocal turn from BANKS.

Paul Carr: The striking thing about this song is the sheer simplicity of it all. The song begins with a simple drum loop layered with downbeat synths. The defeatist opening is replaced with urgent positivity signaled by the keyboards leaping into life. The effect is like suddenly coming up to the surface after a night time swim. All of this frames the vocals perfectly. This an absolutely gorgeous vocal turn from BANKS. She manages to evoke so many emotions in such a short time. Once again she reaches out and grabs your heart. [8/10]

Chris Ingalls: Banks takes a somewhat standard synth-pop mid-tempo dance number and infuses it with a fairly elastic vocal treatment. The synths give the song a slightly edgy warmth, and the insistent beat is pleasant and harmless. But that’s the problem, it feels too anonymous, too generic. The end result is nice, but ultimately forgettable. [5/10]

Adriane Pontecorvo: I’ll always say yes to a smooth flow and heavy drums, and this is a nice, low-key earworm to sway to for a while. It’s an easy track, filled with the same sounds that have dominated the dance pop airwaves for the last couple of years now. Compared to the bold, aggressive visuals of the video, the song itself doesn’t do much to distinguish itself from any other mid-tempo dance tracks of the year, and as decent of a pop song as it is, it’s not one worth actively going back to, and it’s bound to fade away from collective musical memory quickly. [6/10]

Andrew Paschal: Based on what we’ve heard so far from her forthcoming to-be-announced album, Banks seems to be branching out from the mopey sound that defined much of her debut album. This song is more buoyant than previous efforts and possibly the most overtly poppy thing she’s done yet. While failed, unhealthy relationships continue to be her primary theme, she approaches them the topic from a slightly more removed vantage point, and speaks from a position of assuming empowerment rather than victimization. I’ve always liked Banks despite her weaknesses, and she seems to have grown as an artist quite a bit over the past two years. [8/10]

Steve Horowitz: Banks must be lisping on purpose to suggest vulnerability, but she comes off as a whiny child wondering why life is not better. Sure, there are plenty of things to be depressed about, but one doesn’t have to be a Zen philosopher to know one can change one’s attitude. Banks seems stuck in a misery of her own making, and the repetitious beats just reinforce the fact that the only one to unlock the door of her personal jail is herself. [4/10]

William Sutton: In keeping with recent trends in pop and R&B, “Gemini Feed” is a dark and brooding track. A strong vocal performance by Banks sneers at failed relationships, covering common ground to many of her previous songs but delivered with a greater sense of purpose than often seen before. It is also matched by a suitably stark video that acts as a companion piece to her last single, “Fuck With Myself” and suggests a growing artistic vision behind her work. [7/10]

Max Totsky: I’m not sure if Banks realized that she used to be pretty boring or if this is just natural artistic progression, but her new material has been noticeably concerned with stepping out of the box, a move emphasized by the post-Björk outfits and facial ornaments she’s been wearing in her new videos and the fact that her standard indie pop influences are now being replaced by more dimensional instrumentation and a lot more character. Now, even though it’s a bit transparent, there’s something about such a transformation that is worthy of applause. “Gemini Feed” is a bit more restrained, less obnoxious, and far less derivative than past single “Fuck With Myself”, but it still is a bit troubled when it comes to being inoffensive. It seems like Banks is a bit more keen on adding bite to her seduction, but she still hasn’t fully come into her own and ends up producing a song that needs of a bit more zest. [6/10]

Chad Miller: I really wasn’t into the lyrics on this song. We hear about a partner or ex who is bad for the singer, but that’s about how in-depth the song goes. We barely get any mention of how Banks feels nor do we get any clever analyses on the relationship. I am glad though that the song isn’t about alleged zodiac sign and personality trait correlation, and I did enjoy the brooding and dense music. [6/10]

Scott Zuppardo: A dark and breezy pop gem, equally sexy as scary like that moment seconds before a summer thunderstorm. [7/10]

SCORE: 6.33