synth-pop

Artist: 
Breakbot
Label: 
WEA Studios

Breakbot's Still Waters is groovy in the best of ways. Though at first listen they are a near copy of any 1980's pop band, after a while interesting combinations of 80's influence and modern styles present themselves. If you're looking for something relaxing or have anything against electro inspired music then look elsewhere. That being said if you're into something a little funky, that'll make you wiggle in your chair then you've found it. 

Sounds Like: 
Churches
Sounds Like: 
New Order
Name: 
Jacqui Kientzler
Date Reviewed: 
02/17/2016
Artist: 
Avaberee
Label: 
Other People

Avaberee is a Brisbane based group that has put out some very good synth-pop tracks and this album is no different. It was a very good collection of 5 songs that progressively get better as you listen. Only waiting is a dream-like song that puts you in a very relaxed mood but keeps the beat up as to not completely put you to sleep. The mood of the music never wavers too much and keeps the same sound throughout but I feel like it fits really well. The songs almost blend together as you go from one to another because they sound slightly similar.

Sounds Like: 
Grimes
Name: 
Sebastian Machado
Date Reviewed: 
12/09/2015
Artist: 
Metric
Label: 
Universal Music Group

Right off the bat this album started with a cool synthy build up that really set the tone of what I could sense the band members were wanting their vision and sound to be for the entire album. As I was going through the album it felt as though there were moments that were spooky, haunting, and dark. But then you would come across a verse or a hook in a song that releases these rays of sunshine that leaves the listener in a bit of a pleasant shock. Fortunes I thought was a very neat song in the album because I felt as though it acts as a story with a plot, climax, and resolution.

Sounds Like: 
tegan and sara
Sounds Like: 
CHVRCHES
Name: 
Ellie Polsky
Date Reviewed: 
09/24/2015
Artist: 
Pale Blue
Label: 
Captured Tracks Records

I got this album because I was kinda hungry at the time and the artwork had food on it. Now that I look at the artwork more closely, the food isn't too much. It's like half a pear and some bread, amongst other things. There's no way that would be filling enough. I'd definitely need more. This is kinda how the album makes me feel. It's pretty dang good, and makes you just keep wanting to listen to more. It has a nice synth-pop sound with minimal female vocals. But when there are vocals, they are sweet and sonorous.

Sounds Like: 
The Field
Sounds Like: 
M83
Name: 
Ali Shareef
Date Reviewed: 
05/06/2015
Artist: 
Dwntwn
Label: 
Jullian Records

Short and sweet 5 song album from this synth-pop duo with beautiful usage of vocals, instruments (is that a banjo I hear??), and synths. Each song is unique and captivating in its own special way, which is sometimes difficult with this genre. Their songs are also not too long  to get bored and not too short to be left wanting more. This is a playlist I could imagine waking up to and starting my day off on a good note with uplifting beats and lyrics. Definitely music I’d listen to in the future. 

Sounds Like: 
Ghost Beach
Sounds Like: 
St. Lucia
Sounds Like: 
Van She
Sounds Like: 
Mr. Little Jeans
Name: 
Lili Steffen
Date Reviewed: 
04/22/2014
Artist: 
Gardens & Villa
Label: 
Secretly Canadian

Gardens & Villa's new album Dunes explores the popular sound of bright synth-pop. Unfortunately that is tough territory to enter into. Often albums end up completely generic and seldom do alternative artists really master something original in this soundscape. Dunes falls in the generic category especially in contrast to the quirky pop greatness of their self-entitled album. The problem is constraint. The first album was more straight-forward and the sophomore slump pressured them into layering like crazy.

Sounds Like: 
Neon Indian
Sounds Like: 
Small Black
Name: 
Shannon Kurlander
Date Reviewed: 
01/31/2014
Artist: 
CFCF
Label: 
Paper Bag

CFCF, aka Michael Silver, is a Canadian electronic musician. "Outside", Silver's second full length album, has a extremely cinematic and 1980's feel to it. Every song on the album has a great amount of build but takes its time getting there, which might explain the lengthiness of each song. This album would be a great soundtrack to a movie or even a personal epic adventure of one's choosing. This album requires patientience but is worth a listen. 

Sounds Like: 
Neon Indian
Sounds Like: 
Washed Out
Name: 
Jeremy
Date Reviewed: 
11/05/2013
Artist: 
Tristen
Label: 
PUPsnake Records

This album in definitely reminiscent of the 80s. Tristen loves her synths, and everybody (that listens to this album) knows it... that, mixed with some orchestrals and her airy vocals all yield to an eclectic sound. Think Austra meets Lykke Li, but with heavier drums. Would recommend listening to while wildly teasing your hair and using way too much Aquanet.

Sounds Like: 
Austra
Sounds Like: 
Lykke Li
Sounds Like: 
Robyn
Name: 
Jessie Marman
Date Reviewed: 
10/24/2013
Artist: 
Deptford Goth
Label: 
Co-Op/Merok

Daniel Woodhouse (the man behind Deptford Goth) uses synth beats and strong emotions to drive his emotional debut. In a style that is closest to that of a The xx and Sigur Ros combination, Woodhouse takes the listener on a floating journey over darkly crafted synth soundscapes. This album is slow and raw, and this is its design, so it is not ideal for some listening situations. If you want an album to take your mind places late at night, then choose Life After Defo.

Sounds Like: 
The xx
Sounds Like: 
Sigur Ros
Sounds Like: 
James Blake
Name: 
DJ Sutton
Date Reviewed: 
05/01/2013
Artist: 
Chvrches
Label: 
Glassnote Records

Having generated buzz from their singles Lies and The Mother We Share, Chvrches has finally released a small collection of new tracks in the Recover EP, and it doesn't disappoint. The title track, Recover, is electro-pop at its' finest, with shimmering synths and soaring female vocals with a chorus that will be engrained in your memory for awhile. The second track, ZVVL, shows a different side to Chvrches, with predominantly male vocals, with some harmonies, the track slowly builds and creates tension before bursting with a thick bass foundation and a beat reminiscent of trap music.

Sounds Like: 
Little Dragon
Sounds Like: 
Grimes
Name: 
André Pettman
Date Reviewed: 
03/26/2013
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