Now, if you had been frequenting this site over the course of last year, you would have come across a couple of posts on Amanda Stickler, a New York-basd electronic music artist and producer, and her solo recording project Blonde Maze. And with the release of the aching “Summer Rain,” off her debut EP Oceans and a slow-burning and melancholic cover of “Christmas (Baby, Please Come Home),” Steckler received attention here and across several other sites across the blogosphere for slickly produced yet atmospheric electro pop that possessed a plaintive ache and longing for someone dear being half a world away.
It’s been close to a year, since we’ve last heard from Steckler, and her latest single “Antarctica” features a slick, glittering and swooning house music-leaning production featuring layers of cascading and shimmering synths, marimbas, layers of cut and chopped vocal samples, stuttering and skittering drum programming and hand claps paired with Steckler’s breathy and tender cooing. Interestingly, the song focuses on a profound emotional connection — but at its core is that weird dichotomy between the fear and sting of loss and the sense of dependence that comes up within every relationship, even the most functional ones. And it captures that with an emotional honesty and wisdom that belies the artist’s relatively young age.