By Anneliese Hucal
One of electronic dance music’s Achilles’ heels is its tendency to bombard listeners with immature and repetitive lyrics ridden with painfully predictable phrases that tend to infest club dance floors.
The selling point of up-and-coming electronic band Slow Magic is its ability to transcend language and create an atmosphere that epitomizes a serene collection of hypnotic beats and crackly synths swirled into a thoroughly enticing record.
“How to Run Away,” the band’s recently released sophomore album, manages to say more than most all of its EDM contemporaries, despite its complete lack of lyrics.
A handful of electronica conventions, from soothing ambience to enticingly animalistic wordless vocal samples, are expertly combined to create an atmosphere unlike anything currently on the market.
Although the record almost blends together as a singular piece, that’s not to say there isn’t plenty of variety. While standout upbeat song “Girls” has a steady and borderline seductive beat, tracks such as “Manhattan” and “Bear Dance” feature comparably slower and more calming vibes.
The album’s signature ambient style becomes the focal point in “Hold Still,” which draws the listener in with its airy notes and finger-snap samples that reverberate throughout the track.
On the other hand, “Youth Group,” perhaps the album’s darkest sounding track, fills the speakers with steady boom-taps of computerized drumbeats and the shrill twang of an upbeat ukelele.
“Closer” starts with a symphony of chopped female vocals that manage to convey a great deal of emotion, despite the lack of lyrics. Due to the overall lack of commercialization, the album has a clean and original sound that makes it a memorable and easy listen.
“How to Run Away” is particularly experimental with a few constants that seem to work particularly well. Rich bongo beats pitter-patter underneath melodic piano riffs. Meanwhile cosmic-sounding synthesizers groove together, creating a sound as unique as their name. It makes your skin crawl, in a good way.
“How to Run Away” sweeps listeners into an aural space odyssey. Despite its abstract concept, the band’s quick rise in popularity shows that Slow Magic is here to stay, and they will continue to send us to the moon and back for years to come.
Anneliese Hucal can be reached at email@example.com.