DGTL CTL is a mysterious electro pop production and artist duo, whose production and songs draw from several different and very diverse styles, while possessing a flair for the avant-garde to craft an imitable sound that interestingly enough also manages to be incredibly radio friendly. The duo’s debut EP is now slated for release sometime this summer. Now, you may recall that I earlier this year, I wrote about the EP’s first single “Elephant,” a track that that simultaneously nodded at slow-burning Quiet Storm-era R&B, a chilly but efficient minimalism paired with breezy atmospherics and a stark industrial electronica as it featured a production consisting of distorted and shuffling beats, gently swirling and undulating synths and achingly tender vocals with an infectious hook. Lyrically, the song’s narrator talked abotu falling for someone so deeply that they can’t quite figure out a way to actually express themselves. Every time, he thinks about trying to put HIS thoughts and feelings down on paper, it just doesn’t ever add up to the what he feels and thinks in his head. And worse yet, whenever he’s in the presence of his object of desire, they ‘re forced to acknowledge the proverbial elephant in the room — their unexpressed longing and desire for that person — and yet so many things are hopelessly left unsaid. By far, it was arguably one of the most sensual yet desperate songs I’ve heard this year.
The duo’s latest single “3 Strikes” continues on somewhat similar vein as its predecessor — in the sense that the song manages to draw from Quiet Storm R&B; however, it also nods at the indie dance pop of Cut Copy and Midnight Juggernauts as brief blasts of electric guitar are paired with stomping, boom-bap beats, wobbling yet propulsive synths paired with achingly tender falsetto vocals detailing a relationship that consists of a dysfunctional push and pull between both parties, in which they both use and abuse each other, fight and fuss, and endlessly repeat. And as a result, the song bristles with a barely contained bitterness over a confusing situation that they can’t quite get out of and can’t seem to comprehend; after all, in terms of most human relationships, we’re drawn to people and situations that we can’t quite understand or recognize — and in this song, the song reflects that with an uncanny psychological accuracy while also continuing to be radio friendly.