S.C.U.M founder and vocalist Thomas Cohen unveiled his latest project in 2017 as Sylph and made a series of club EPs. He signed to the iconic Mute Records to release his new EP. Silver As It Was Before will be out on 21 May, and Sylph has already shared the thumping, trancey, and shoegazey lead single, “Braid”. That went straight onto our PopMatters Picks playlist as the track announced the arrival of an artist expert at blending pop melodies, electronics, and elements of industrial and experimental music. It’s a stunning single, but Sylph has only just begun.
Today, Cohen teams up with fellow Mute electro artist Nicolas Bougaïeff for his latest single and video, “In the Morning Light”. This number keeps the industrial inclinations, marries them to big-beat techno, and layers mesmerizing layers of vocals upon the top. The effect feels quite psychedelic and beautiful. The track was written back in 2018 and is an ode to the communalism of raves, so impossible to experience in these pandemic times. “I’ve always found the experience of performance to feel communal. And that’s what happens in clubs. This track was very much a first thought, and very much a feeling and a response—careless, immediate. It almost feels nostalgic now,” says Cohen.
Bougaïeff says “he was really drawn to this idea of a song structure combining harsh mechanical vibes and ethereal vocals. During recording, we spent a few days and nights going out to Berghain in between jam sessions at my studio.” Regarding the video, Cohen adds, “We shot the video on a resort just outside of Muscat in Oman. We would only shoot at night and early in the morning, climbing the beautifully deformed rocks that overlooked the ocean. ‘In The Morning Light” is a song about unification and the sunrise, recorded in the summer of 2018 in Berlin.”