Pristine and purposeful synthpop
Synthpop has enjoyed something of a mass scene growth recently. Over the last six or so years, the number of synthpop bands has increased dramatically. From Metric to Chvrches, Pawws to Swiss Lips, there’s been a mass influx of bands that are in similar strains of the same vein.
You’d think then that, like with shoegaze, the scene would begin to get a bit drab and repetitive. And while maybe to an extent this could be considered true, the synthpop genre seems to be thriving well. With a lot more internal variation than shoegaze as a genre, the acts in synthpop seem instead to one-up each other with each release. It’s an ever evolving genre.
Which brings us, nicely, to ‘Promises And Plans’ – the latest track from synthpop duo Lilly Wolf. It’s a lumbering amalgamation of everything that defines synthpop itself: it opens with a pristine guitar, which bears a sound that is buoyant atop waves of fuzzy synths. Underneath, there’s deep bass blows and a consistent tick of percussion that keeps the track flowing strong.
It’s a good mix, but synthpop is only ever really as good as its vocals. Luckily, Lilly Wolf have a very good and fitting vocal section. Melodious and brimming with a sense of innocence and naivity, it works well alongside the guitars to provide a coherent and polished experience.
Better still, not once does it feels derivative or just churned out. It may bear some stylistic resemblance to what has come before, but it is distinct in itself: it’ s unmistakable for anything other than ‘Promises And Plans’. It’s a piece that carves its own identity – and it’s a good identity to have.