Tag: indie dance pop

 

Comprised of  Juan Ledesma, Charlie Woods, Alex Lopez, and Robert Villar, the Miami, FL-based indie dance pop quartet Krisp formed back in 2011, and over the past few years they’ve developed a reputation for a groove-based, 80s inspired synth pop sound that possesses elements of indie electro pop, chill wave and indie rock.

Their debut EP, Mamani Vice was released in 2012 to critical praise from the likes of Earmilk and Indie Shuffle, and as a result they’ve opened for the likes of LCD Soundsystem‘s Nancy Whang, Miami Horror, Junior Boys, Blood Orange and Holy Ghost! among others, which has expanded their profile nationally. Their follow-up EP Sonic Monarch which South Florida-based talent house Gummdrops will be releasing in January will be comprised of material that is a subtle change of sonic direction. As the band’s Alex Lopez mentioned to the folks at Indie Shuffle, “On our first EP, Mamani Vice, we used a lot of synths and electric drums. For the new material on Sonic Monarch EP, it’s more organic, because its instrument-driven. We’re still using Charlie Wood’s synths, but not Juan’s or mine. We’ve got a funk/indie/electronic style going.”

The EP’s first single “167” pairs layers of  atmospheric, shimmering and cascading synths, four-on-the-floor drumming, angular funk guitar chords, a sinuous bass line and plaintive vocals in a song that sounds indebted to 80s New Wave and post-punk — in particular, the song reminds me quite a bit of an atmospheric and propulsive version of The Fixx’s “The Sign of Fire,”and “Red Skies at Night” with a slight surf rock leaning; it’s a danceable and goofily fun song that manages to evoke watching American Bandstand in the mornings and singing along to your favorite songs.

Comprised of Karolina Komstedt and Johan Angergård, the Ahus, Sweden-based electro pop duo Club 8 have a long-held reputation for being incredibly difficult to pigeonhole since their formation in 1995. Initially, the Swedish duo began as a Bossa Nova-inspired guitar pop act with the release of their debut effort, Nouvelle But with the 1998 release of their sophomore effort, The Friend I Once Had, the duo went through a complete and radical change of sonic direction, as that effort had the duo writing electro dance music. The duo’s next three albums, released between 2001 and 2003 had the duo switching things up with material that leaned towards indie soul.

Up until 2010, Angergård had served as produced — until the 2013 release of Above The City; however, Angergård takes up production duties on the duo’s soon-to-be released Pleasure slated for a November 20 release through Labrador Records. And as Komstedt explains in press notes, “Pleasure is an album about love, sex and jealousy. Musically, it is possibly our most focused release to date.” Interestingly, the album’s latest single “Late Night” is a swooningly wistful and melancholic song that looks at a love affair, viewing it as immediately exciting and passionate — that is until that initial excitement wanes and the bright colors of the relationship gently turn grey. At its very core, the song’s narrator clings to seemingly old-fashioned romantic dreams and notions, and their nostalgia, all while desperately wishing that feeling would come back. It seems to subtly suggest that while love is something that we all desperately desire, relationships with other people can be confusing and hellish — and yet, we want so badly that we’ll do anything for it.

Sonically, the song pairs wistful nostalgia with layers of glistening and undulating synths reminiscent of Stevie Nicks‘ “Stand Back,” and The Human League’s “Don’t You Want Me?” and Komstedt’s hushed coos to craft a song that’s a slickly produced pop confection — but from the viewpoint of someone who’s been in a number of love relationships and has seen them repeatedly fail and yet remarkably hasn’t had their hope beaten down.

 

Originally, known as the frontman of pop act Throw Me The Statue, Scott Reitherman’s solo recording project Pillar Point has received attention for a melancholy yet bouncy electro pop sound primarily comprised of vintage, analog synthesizers, drum kits and sleek bass lines. As the story goes, Reitherman was planning to write and record his sophomore full-length album in his Seattle home when he received an unexpected invitation to record the album at Kevin Barnes’ home studio, while Reitherman was opening for of Montreal during their US tour.

Once the tour wrapped up, Reitherman spent a few months crafting demos of the material that would wind up comprising Marble Mouth before spending a month at Barnes’ house refining and recording alongside of Washed Out‘s drummer, Cameron Gardener and Kishi Bashi‘s percussionist Philip Mayer.

Reithernan then spent a six period in New Orleans writing and refining both the album’s lyrics and vocals. And as Reitherman explained in press notes, “New Orleans was the most meditative and mysterious part of making the record. I wanted to sink into that city and scrutinize the romantic southern sojourn.”

Marble Mouth‘s first single, album opening track “Part Time Love” pairs layers of twitchy and cascading synths with propulsive, four-on-the-floor drumming and Reitherman’s ethereal cooing to craft a sound that’s reminiscent of The Talking Heads, Tobacco and others, while subtly nodding at Top 40 pop; in other words, the sound is tense, neurotic and incredibly danceable and accessible pop with infectious hooks.

Comprised of Darren Weiss (vocals and drums) and Danny Present (bass), the Los Angeles-based duo of Papa have been playing music in a variety of bands and projects since they were 11.  The duo have spent the past couple building up a national profile as they’ve toured the country’s major festival circuit, and have opened for the likes of Cold War Kids, Of Monsters and Men, Girls, Handsome Furs, and Florence and the Machine, among others and after an incredibly busy schedule, the duo went into the studio and began working on material that reportedly is a change in sonic direction that was largely influenced by the experiences they’ve had over that period , playing half-filled clubs to sold-out amphitheaters, self-releasing material and having major label support and back again.

Weiss and Presant’s latest single “Hold On” is the first original material they’ve released since the release of their 2013 full-length effort, Tender Madness and the single is a funky track with a propulsive rhythm, soaring hooks paired with urgently sung lyrics to craft a song that feels anthemic and club-ready while possessing a direct, intimate emotionality. It’s radio friendly pop that feels and sounds carefully and thoughtfully crafted while possessing an upbeat, swagger.

Weiss and Present will be embarking on a short West Coast tour over the later part of the fall. Check out the tour dates below.
Tour Date: 
Nov 27  – The Echoplex  Los Angeles, CA
Dec 1 – The Chapel  San Francisco, CA
Dec 2 – Don Quixotes  Santa Cruz, CA
Dec 6 – Constellation Room   Santa Ana, CA
Dec 9 – The Casbah    San Diego, CA
Dec 10 –  Crescent Ballroom – Phoenix, AZ

New Video: Superhuman Happiness’ Playful Yet Wistfully Nostalgic Video for “Super 8”

Certainly, if you’ve been frequenting JOVM since its inception 5 years ago, you’d be familiar with the Brooklyn-based dance pop/funk Superhuman Happiness. Their long-awaited full-length debut, Hands was one of my favorite albums released last year and as […]