Browsing Tag

Alt Electronica

Brikcs shattered boundaries and entered innovation’s nirvana with ‘King’

Brikcs, a visionary from the ethereal edges of music’s evolving landscape, delivered a profound auditory experience in his latest single, King. With a foundation laid by a Mogwai-meets-Portishead neo-classic intro of eloquent keys and phantasmically distorted vocal notes, the track boldly transitions into the dark territories of trap. If you went down the rabbit hole and instead of finding wonderland you entered innovation’s nirvana and met your demons, your trip would come a close visceral second to hitting play on King.

The artistic juxtaposition in King — between harsh, ensnaring bars and the enduring non-lexical harmonies that echo the transcendent terrain of Sigur Rós — crafts a captivating portal to an aural realm defined by authenticity. The single thrives on a blend of ornate classical notes and reverberating electronic effects, creating an installation of unparalleled emotional intensity.

The lyrical assertion of autonomy challenges listeners to disintegrate preconceived labels with every bar dropped. Acting as a nod to how the world attempts to shape us into archetypes, Brikcs resists them all, violently shaking them into the ether of this masterpiece.

Brikcs, an Icelandic multi-instrumentalist now based in Copenhagen, eschews easy classification, melding the raw energy of underground clubs with the refined grandeur of opera houses. King encapsulates his complex musical journey through haunting pianos, ethereal vocals, cerebral rap, and an electro-orchestral crescendo.

Accompanied by an experimental short film, directed by Vasco Alexandre and shot at ARKEN Museum of Modern Art, the track is not only a music release but a cinematic event, currently making waves in film festivals worldwide.

King was officially released on March 22nd; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Delve into the digital abyss with Intonation Effigy’s harbingering journey, Artificial Intelligence

Intonation Effigy’s latest single, ‘Artificial Intelligence‘, composed by Keegan LaBrot, is a dark and harbingering journey into the underbelly of electronica. This cinematically dystopian instrumental release is larger than life in its encapsulation of the ever-lingering threat of AI’s inevitable domination.

The track is a masterclass in creating a disquieting and artfully disconcerting atmosphere. Intonation Effigy’s use of complex and glitchy time signatures is a sonic visualisation of the tumultuous epoch we are entering. The equilibrium between dark, bass-drenched synthetics and light, almost ethereal aesthetics is a testament to Intonation Effigy’s ability to emotionally round out his immersive productions. The track is a journey, not just through sound, but through the emotional landscape of a world grappling with the rise of artificial intelligence.

As the third single from this artfully profound visionary, ‘Artificial Intelligence’ establishes Intonation Effigy as an essential name to follow in the electronica scene. This track is more than a musical composition; it’s a statement, a reflection of our times, and a glimpse into a possible future dominated by AI. For fans of electronica looking for depth, complexity, and emotional resonance, ‘Artificial Intelligence’ by Intonation Effigy is a must-listen.

Artificial Intelligence dropped on March 19th; stream the single on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Yodashe is a spectral siren in her avant-garde electronica track, EASTER

Yodashe, an avant-garde firebrand will leave you eating out of the tones of her spectral vocal presence as she weaves a tapestry of sound that transcends the ordinary in her single EASTER.

She didn’t need any further testaments to her ingenuity at this stage in her rapidly ascending career, but in EASTER, she became an undeniable contender for the accolade of one of the most prodigal names in electronica. While others are content riding on the coattails of Trip-Hop pioneers, Yodashe uses glitchy elements as one facet in her richly layered sonic synthesis.

In EASTER, Yodashe’s production skills shine through the complex blend of massive beats, trance-esque phasers and indietronica trappings, creating a hauntingly panoramic soundscape. Her introspective vocals weave through the music, creating a sense of intimacy that contrasts with the grandeur of the electronic backdrop. This juxtaposition is the heart of the track, a dance between the colossal and the vulnerable.

As the less-than-archetypal rhythmic progressions storm through you, playing havoc with your rhythmic pulses, until you are left wantonly desperate for the next hook to ensnare you into the ebb and flow this production that is as disorientating as it is exhilarating.

For those seeking a track that defies convention and delivers a profound sonic experience, EASTER by the London-based artist, producer, and Redbull Music Academy alumni is an essential listen.

Stream the EASTER EP on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

SQUARMS started a revolution with their avant-garde electronica manifesto Goodbye Thinking

As we teeter on the precipice of a new world, not the brave new world imagined by Aldous Huxley, but one in which cognition falls to the wayside as AI thinks and creates in place of us, SQUARMS have elucidated the beauty which lies within organic creation, the zeal of true passion, the fire of authentic volition through their debut LP, Goodbye Thinking.

After lulling you into a psychedelic neo-jazz dream state through the opening title single, the ground-breaking electronica duo narrates a harbingering account of where society has rushed to, an era of technology advancing us as we regress into discord and dissension.

With the vocals finding the middle ground between voracious charisma and histrionic oration in the extended intro single, the verses ensnare with the grip of a beartrap, leaving you open to the mind-altering jazzy neo-pop grooves in the first of the standout singles, Artificial Love.  As the intricate layers of the instrumentals pull together over the solid backbeat, culminating in a tranquilly haunting haze that spills into the psyche, the vocals pour an elixir of ardour, giving us a taste of what we’re missing when connection is digitised and commodified.

The single, Meatbrain, reaches the epitome of oscillating innovation; the interstellar production reverberates around dystopic aesthetics as the Devil May Care vocal lines marry human emotion and logic, painting a disparaging portrait of the future that we’re sleepwalking into.

The fiercely independent DIY outfit, now residing between Newcastle Upon Tyne and Japan didn’t just make their mark with Goodbye Thinking, they started an aural revolution with the avant-garde manifesto.

Goodbye Thinking was officially released on March 15th; stream the LP on all major platforms including Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Slip into the hypersonic vortex of Peach Giraffe’s latest experimental track, Intertwined

Peach Giraffe’s new single, “Intertwined,” is a masterful blend of skate punk, hyper-pop, trap nuances, and a touch of Arcade Fire, creating a vortexical kaleidoscope of avant-garde electronica. The grungy and antagonised vocal lines sink into this eclectic mix, stitching “Intertwined” with a mind-altering amalgam of aural aesthetics.

This daring combination cements Peach Giraffe as one of the most bold, indomitable, and fearlessly innovative artists in the alternative music scene. As genre lines blur in “Intertwined,” Peach Giraffe’s commitment to sonically visualising emotional themes shines through. The single is a lyrically poetic exposition of a relationship where distance doesn’t necessitate disconnection, despite the ambiguous parameters that could easily send the mind into a spiral with too much contemplation.

Peach Giraffe’s approach to music is an unforced journey of experimentation, spanning over a decade. His process involves piecing together a puzzle of sounds and ideas, driven not by genre constraints but by spontaneous inspiration. “Intertwined” is a testament to this organic and free-flowing approach to music creation. It’s a track that doesn’t just fit into the alternative music scene; it stands out as a bold statement of Peach Giraffe’s unique and unbridled creativity.

Intertwined reached the airwaves on March 10; stream the official music video on YouTube now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

DARCY – Mandem Carni: an avant-garde installation of artful electronic annihilation

With her sophomore single, Mandem Carni, the artist and enigma DARCY emerged from the shadows of her former alias and unleashed a visceral force to be reckoned with. The dark, bass-heavy oscillations resonate with a raw, physical intensity, capable of giving even the most robust speakers goosebumps.

This track is a masterful blend of genres, straddling the line between an industrial electronic horror score and an avant-garde installation of artful annihilation. It’s a sound that carries the terrorised glamour of a Dana Dentata release, yet pulses with the kinetic energy akin to Avalien. DARCY’s approach to music production is both aggressive and energetic, yet marked by an increasing fluidity and ambition that sets her apart.

Mandem Carni is an unflinching embrace of the dark and the macabre. It’s a track that doesn’t just flirt with the nightmarish; it revels in it, all while maintaining a level of artistic finesse that transcends mere shock value. The production quality is impeccable, with each beat and synth meticulously crafted to contribute to an atmosphere of controlled chaos.

For anyone with a penchant for the darker, more brooding variants of drum and bass, Mandem Carni is an augmented anthem to be experienced.

Mandem Carni disrupted the airwaves on February 18th; stream the release on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spirits of Saturn – Transfigured: A Synth-Pop Remedy for Souls Unbounded by Earth’s Orbit

Spirits of Saturn, a band that emerged like a comet in the musical cosmos, has graced our auditory senses with their latest single, Transfigured. The synth-pop odyssey that transcends the mundane unravels as a vibrant fusion of synth and strings, weaving a star-roving tapestry of influence from Kraftwerk, Todd Rundgren, and Daft Punk to submerge synth-pop fans in a constellation of future-perfect disco-pop sonics and vocals that can croon your soul out of kilter.

The beat-bolstered synth-pop ballad explores the mental labyrinth navigated during post-relationship dissolution; It’s a narrative of emotional metamorphosis, where even the most visceral feelings disintegrate through transmutation. The song’s structure, with its stabbing synth lines and euphoric beats, creates an atmosphere that will bring you down to earth and beyond its atmospheric remit. As Transfigured plays, you can’t help but feel unshackled from earthly constraints while simultaneously being in tune with the ache only humankind will know through our romantically masochistic tendencies.

If any outfit has what it takes to dominate the synth-pop scene in 2024, we’d put our money on Spirits of Saturn. They’ve already graced some of the most renowned venues in the UK with their decadently transcendent tones and proven their neon songwriting stripes.

Transfigured will land in Earth’s orbit on March 1st; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Def Ember synthesised the future into retro melodies in their expansively fusionistic track, Quiddity

Def Ember’s latest seminal release, ‘Quiddity‘, from their double A-side single established the aural alchemist as a forerunner of genre-obliterating innovation. Released on January 26th, this track is a bold venture into unchartered melodic waters. Known for their genre-fluid approach, the Los Angeles-based artist ensured ‘Quiddity’ stands out with its warm meandering rhythms that guide listeners through a serenely dynamic soundscape.

The track skillfully balances a solid, kicking backbeat with mellifluous synth lines and soulfully arresting guitar licks, creating a mesmerising contrast that you can lose yourself in time after time without any of the magic in the polished production getting lost. While the synths bring a touch of nostalgia, the other layers in this smorgasbord of style push the release into the future.

The layered synthetics add depth and complexity without overwhelming the rhythmic pulses, thanks to the track’s meticulous construction and sci-fi-esque ambience. It’s a track that doesn’t just play to the ears but engages the soul, marking an exciting chapter in the artist’s evolving musical journey.

Stream the latest release from Def Ember on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Etherdene – Summer Dreams: An Indietronica Ode to Seasonal Longing

Etherdene’s latest single, ‘Summer Dreams‘, is a masterstroke in indietronica, blending the magnetic allure of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs with the Smiths’ jangle-pop melodies, all while infusing a shoegaze and retro-futuristic electronica reminiscent of Tiny Ghosts.

Since her solo debut in June 2023, Etherdene has been an indomitable force in the music industry. Each release has solidified her place in the hearts of listeners and playlist curators. Her music, an affectingly arresting cocktail of empowering messages and evocative soundscapes, resonates deeply on every conceivable level.

‘Summer Dreams’, released in the heart of February, initially strikes as a paradoxical choice. However, the track’s lyrical yearning for the warmth and sticky-sweet hues of summer, set against the backdrop of the Pacific Northwest’s rainy winters, unifies through the affirmation that we’re all in it together, and now we have the ultimate soundtrack to our unified longing.

We didn’t think there was much scope for improvement from Etherdene’s previous single, You Are My World, but the complexities within Summer Dreams that reveal a new reason to fall head over heels for the single with every listen prove that Etherdene is poised to become an indietronica firebrand in 2024.

Summer Dreams was officially released on February 9th; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Alvinos Zavlis delivered sensually dark catharsis with his moody pop meets dark trip-hop mash-up, I Shouldn’t

The Cyprian Bristol-based artist and producer, Alvinos Zavlis, is in his experimental element in his fourth alt-electronica LP, After Sex All Animals Are Sad. With an album title that compels you to sonically explore the contents through eccentrically offbeat name alone, the bar is already set high. But evidently, Zavlis knows exactly how to transcend expectation and temporal boundaries with his dark syntheses of trip-hop, alt-pop, and artfully manifested electronica.

Sitting on the leftfield of Pop, one of the standout singles, I Shouldn’t, featuring Sae, is an ethereally hypnotic extension of the contemporary moody pop trends fused with 90s trip-hop that glitches and oscillates in the same vein of Massive Attack and Portishead.

The alchemic blend carries just as much cultivation and evidence of evocative rhythmic control as the latest releases from Chelsea Wolfe, but the way Zavlis locked into the collaborative chemistry between him and Sae allowed the release to resound beyond compare. The sensually dark catharsis is superlative evidence of how honed his sound has become after he took a hiatus and returned with fresh fervour.

In his own words:

“The main idea of the album is how the chase for perfection in your artistic craft can hinder personal relationships, health, and financial stability.”

For the full Alvinos Zavlis experience, stream After Sex All Animals Are Sad in full by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast