sniffle party’s initial arrival last fall felt like a covert operation. a lone song, “all the snow is gone,” dropped on soundcloud without much fanfare, yet its rubbery bass lines and swirling, reverb-laden vocals evoked a nostalgia that gradually pushed the track outside the parameters of a well-kept local secret. the project was quickly enveloped under the umbrella of lowkey radical, an arts collective that uses the i-94 corridor between minneapolis and eau claire to shuttle its aesthetic into two key midwestern markets; the song eventually became a precursor to something more substantial.
if witch house truly died and was buried, then sniffle party exhumed the genre’s body and pumped it full of stadium-pop steroids. serena wagner’s contralto lilts with an affect that straddles melancholic and maudlin across the entirety of her brand-new debut ep, peach dream, rising and falling with the effortless cadence of a sigh. this decidedly moody, haunting timbre is certainly fodder for eric charles christenson’s production cues, but neo-noir atmospheres occasionally blossom into grand, sweeping gestures, like the cascading synth arpeggios bolstering the hook on “cavalier” and the bubbling undercurrent that pushes wagner into the stratosphere on “wanderer.”
peach dream premieres here on the dimestore, right below this paragraph. it’s a beautiful collaboration, yet another reason why the collective mindset of lowkey radical has the capacity to resonate far and wide beyond their geographic confines. this is a soundtrack for sunsets, for reflection, for twilight drives through backcountry roads. dig in.
the members of haunt may now split their time between los angeles and portland, but the project’s genesis is rooted in a childhood friendship cultivated in laguna beach. since forming a year ago, the duo has been stockpiling a collection of nocturnal pop songs that harness many of the salient attributes of chillwave but are examined through a sharply-focused lens.
haunt will release their latest ep, crush, on may 6th via portland-based track and field records. a short, intimate glimpse into the ep’s construction can be viewed above; below, you’ll find the premiere of its lead single, “perfume,” awash in gorgeous organ tones and armed with a subtle yet infectious hook. listen in.
baby blanket’s output thus far has been sparse – a guest vocal on sayth’s body pillow ep last year, followed by his solo debut – but each wisp on an aesthetic seems to have built to his latest single, “i tried so hard to sleep the sad away.” a subtle about-face, “sleep the sad away” again finds the minneapolis songwriter teaming with fellow lowkey radical member north house to flesh out a minimal, melancholic foundation, although glitchy percussion and elastic synths factor in more heavily this time around. beneath the surface lies a tender account of finding refuge from paralyzing social anxiety; take a listen to “i tried so hard to sleep the sad away” below.
brooklyn duo beacon are prepping their sophomore full-length, escapements, out this friday via ghostly international. after loosing a pair of indelible singles over the past few months, thomas mullarney iii and jacob gossett have shared the album’s title track, a composition defined by liquid synth pads that slowly dissolve into a seductive, nocturnal texture coated with mullarney’s consonant sighs. take a listen to “escapements” below.
scott reitherman is slated to release his sophomore full-length as pillar point, marble mouth, on january 22nd via polyvinyl records. after sharing the album’s brooding lead single,”part time love,” in late october, reitherman has deposited a second offering to digest before the year’s end. “dove” is every bit as haunting yet cathartic as its predecessor, with dizzying arpeggiated cellos and a resolute drum beat pulsating through an eerie vocal sample of the song’s title. its lyrics feel cleansing and therapeutic as well, perhaps a preview of thematics reitherman will suss out across the album’s duration. check out “dove” below.
brighton quintet phoria eased their way into the internet’s collective earbuds last year with display, an ep dotted with sensual whispers that eventually bloomed into massive, saturated electronica. after a rather quiet 2015, phoria are set to drop their long-awaited debut full-length, out sometime early next year. the album’s release has been prefaced by “melatonin,” a surging lead single that finds the band tightening up their aesthetic until comfortable before through traversing arpeggiated realms to reach an epiphany of euphoric choral pads. take a listen below.
california native michl lives just east of los angeles in the inland empire, firmly insulated from the sunnier attributes of coastal life. his debut single, “kill our way to heaven,” is appropriately nocturnal; trebly guitars work in lockstep with a throbbing, subterranean bass line to create a brooding aura well-suited for michl’s debauchery-laced confessional. take a listen to “kill our way to heaven” below.
los angeles duo oyster kids emerged earlier this month with “creepy,” a haunting debut single with strong synth-pop urges held in check by ominous bass lines and an eerie vocal duet throughout the chorus. the new music video for “creepy” compounds that aesthetic; kamall allaway weaves a morbid tale through a stock high school prom setting, replete with doll-like leading roles and a pair of mummies that act as their handlers. check out the clip below.