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RUI HO Creates Ecstatic Electropop on 'Lov3 & L1ght'

Heavenly sonic colors flow freely in RUI HO's artistic sanctuary, and the view from the audience is one of sheer euphoria.

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Music

Hot Chip Stay Up for 'Late Night Tales'

Hot Chip's contribution to the perennial compilation project Late Night Tales is a mixed bag, but its high points are consistent with the band's excellence.

Music

PM Picks Playlist 2: Bamboo Smoke, LIA ICES, SOUNDQ

PopMatters Picks Playlist features the electropop of Bamboo Smoke, LIA ICES' stunning dream folk, Polish producer SOUNDQ, the indie pop of Pylon Heights, a timely message from Exit Kid, and Natalie McCool's latest alt-pop banger.

Music

PM Picks Playlist 1: Rett Madison, Folk Devils + More

The first PopMatters Picks Playlist column features searing Americana from Rett Madison, synthpop from Everything and Everybody, the stunning electropop of Jodie Nicholson, the return of post-punk's Folk Devils, and the glammy pop of Baby FuzZ.

Music

Pop's Cristina Hart May Be a "Bad Girlfriend" But She's Honest

London's Cristina Hart may be a "Bad Girlfriend", but she has a way with a catchy dance pop tune.

Music

Fave Five: Roosevelt

German synthpop wunderkid Roosevelt continues to tease out new singles from a potential third album, but this "Five Favorite Synth Sounds in a Song" is an electronic history lesson in and of itself.

Music

Yachtclub101 Mix Synthpop and Cats on "Leave Me Alone" (premiere)

Yachtclub101's "Leave Me Alone" sparkles with glorious pop melodies, bubbly synths, infectious dance beats, sing-along choruses, and cats.

Music

Brothertiger Discusses Finding Inspiration in the Strangest Places

A moody new record reflecting our times, an instrumental fundraiser for charity, and cycling escapes to Rockaway Beach. Brothertiger is back with his first new studio full-length in years, and he can't wait for us to share in his emotional journey.

Music

Buscrates Brings the G-Funk on Soulful "How Ya Gonna Do It"

Pittsburgh's Buscrates marries a soulful Kate Moe Dee vocal to G-Funk beats and deep grooves on his latest single, "How Ya Gonna Do It".

Music

Cut Copy Trade in Accessibility for Expansion on 'Freeze, Melt'

On Freeze, Melt, Cut Copy trade in accessibility for expansion and make their pop a touch more cerebral by imbuing it with elements of IDM and ambient music.

Music

Video Age Show How Much They Love the 1980s on 'Pleasure Line'

Pleasure Line shows that Video Age clearly have the musical chops to pull off a precise pastiche, but it also shows a band that went too far down that rabbit hole.

Music

The Killers' 'Imploding the Mirage' Promises Dynamite Rock Yet Delivers Tepid Synthpop

Imploding the Mirage marginally reinvents the Killers' sound, but the lyrics problematically redesign archaic ideology, resulting in a regressive album.

Music

Black Marble Meet 'Johnny and Mary' on New Covers EP

On I Must Be Living Twice, Black Marble pleases fans with studio versions of recent live covers of songs by Robert Palmer, Wire, the Field Mice, and Grouper.

Music

Electropop's Cut Copy Discuss New Album 'Freeze, Melt' As They Continue to Evolve

In advance of their sixth studio album, we spoke with Cut Copy's Dan Whitford about Freeze, Melt, and the road the electropop group took to get to where they are.

Music

Electropop's Amethysts Sparkle on "Alone" (premiere)

Electropop's Amethysts share their new single, "Alone", a gently understated, gleaming pop gem that gently drips into your subconcious.

Music

A New Erasure Album Is Precisely What This Pandemic Needs

Cue Erasure's new album: The Neon. Music may not by itself cure our societal ills, but the virtue of superb electropop is that it helps make them seem a bit less insurmountable.

Music

Washed Out's 'Purple Noon' Supplies Reassurance and Comfort

Washed Out's Purple Noon makes an argument against cynicism simply by existing and sounding as good as it does.

Music

Jess Cornelius Creates Tautly Constructed Snapshots of Life

Former Teeth & Tongue singer-songwriter Jess Cornelius' Distance is an enrapturing collection of punchy garage-rock, delicate folk, and arty synthpop anthems which examine liminal spaces between us.

Music

Planningtorock Is Queering Sound, Challenging Binaries, and Making Infectious Dance Music

Planningtorock emphasizes "queering sound and vision". The music industry has its hierarchies of style, of equipment, of identities. For Jam Rostron, queering music means taking those conventions and deliberately manipulating and subverting them.

Music

Eyedress Sets Emotions Against Shoegaze Backdrops on 'Let's Skip to the Wedding'

Eyedress' Let's Skip to the Wedding is a jaggedly dreamy assemblage of sounds that's both temporally compact and imaginatively expansive, all wrapped in vintage shoegaze ephemera.

Music

The Naked and Famous Go All-Out Pop on 'Recover'

The Naked and Famous' first album since 2016, Recover, eschews the idea of a rock band. They have gone and hard-boiled their sound into something resembling modern day pop forms.

Music

Buscabulla Chronicle a Return to Puerto Rico in Chic Synthwave on 'Regresa'

Buscabulla's authenticity -- along with dynamite production chops and musicianship -- is irreplaceable, and it makes Regresa a truly soulful synthwave release.

Music

Fave Five: The Naked and Famous

Following two members leaving the group in 2018, synthpop mavens the Naked and Famous are down to a duo for the first time ever and discuss the records they turned to help make their aptly-named fourth record, Recover.

Evan Sawdey
Music

Art Feynman Creates Refreshing Worldbeat Pop on 'Half Price at 3:30'

On Half Price at 3:30, Art Feynman again proves himself adept at building colorful worlds from unexpected and well-placed aural flourishes.

Music

Jessie Ware Returns to Form on 'What's Your Pleasure'

On What's Your Pleasure, Jessie Ware returns to where it all began, the dance floor.

Music

'Switched-On Seeker' Is an Imaginative Electronic Reimagining of Mikal Cronin's Latest LP

Listeners who prefer dense rock/pop timbres will no doubt prefer Mikal Cronin's 'Seeker'. However, 'Switched-On Seeker' will surely delight fans of smaller-scale electronic filters.

Music

Jessie Ware Embraces Her Club Culture Roots on Rapturous 'What's Your Pleasure?'

British diva Jessie Ware cooks up a glittery collection of hedonistic disco tracks and delivers one of the year's best records with What's Your Pleasure.

Music

São Paulo's Céu Returns with a Fresh Perspective on 'APKÁ!'

On Céu's APKÁ!, blissful interpretations of late-night dance music styles and high-heat MPB make for a multidimensional album of soulful energy, replete with her effortless sophistication.

Reviews

Judie Tzuke's 'The Chrysalis Recordings' Highlights Her Early ‘80s Transition to Synthpop

One day, perhaps, the collected works of Judie Tzuke, one of the United Kingdom's most prolific, long-serving, and interesting singer-songwriters, may be seriously reappraised. Until then, dive into The Chrysalis Recordings.

Music

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith's New LP Is Lacking in Songcraft but Rich in Texture

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith's The Mosaic of Transformation is a slightly uneven listen. It generally transcends the tropes of its genre, but occasionally substitutes substance for style.

Music

10 Key Tracks From the British Synthpop Boom of 1980

It's 40 years since the first explosion of electronic songs revitalized the UK charts with futuristic subject matter, DIY aesthetics, and occasionally pompous lyrics. To celebrate, here's a chronological list of those Moog-infused tracks of 1980 that had the biggest impact.

Music

The 1975's 'Notes on a Conditional Form' Is Laudably Thought-Provoking and Thrilling

The 1975 follow A Brief Inquiry... with an even more intriguing, sprawling, and chameleonic song suite. Notes on a Conditional Form shows a level of unquenchable ambition, creativity, and outspoken curiosity that's rarely felt in popular music today.

Music

Electropop's Sarah Walk Celebrates Queer Identity With "What Do I Want?" (premiere)

Pop's Sarah Walk moves in an electropop direction with her latest single "What Do I Want?". It's part of a new album that tackles the difficult issues nearly all women face in patriarchal societies, especially queer women.

Music

Brits in Hot Weather Presents: Empathy Test

London's Empathy Test are preparing to release their stunning new album, Monsters, a richly textured, cinematic record that wraps melancholy in a darkly catchy synthpop blanket. Get to know the band in-depth in this new interview.

Reviews

Sparks Still Ignite with 'A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip'

After nearly 50 years and two dozen albums, Sparks continue their reign of resonantly quirky art pop-rock delights on A Steady Drip, Drip, Drip.

Music

Half Waif's 'The Caretaker' Is a Small Art Pop Treasure

Half Waif's second album, The Caretaker, takes a microscope and a scalpel to the mysteries and wonders of the quotidian, to great effect.


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