Winter: Supreme Blue Dream (Lolipop Records, 2015)

“Individually, the songs are bite-sized morsels: densely packed pop treasures between two and four minutes long at head-bobbing tempo. Whether sensual (“Strange Emotions”) or wooly (“Crazy”), each song employs vintage Roland tones and effects that shake up the staid fuzz & ‘verb conventions many dreampop bands are departing from. “Someone Like You” opens with an 80’s chime and string hook that goes front to back at high velocity with the grounding thump of a Precision bassline. Samira’s rhythmic bilabials tiptoe through the bridge as her overdubbed leads soar into the modulating expanse, the bifurcated guitars and harpischord arpeggios bespoke with reverb. And that’s just the first song.
The slow-tempo “Like I Do” builds on a field recording and flute patch, holding indefinitely for the guitar’s acoustic strums and Samira’s chanting “They don’t know you like I do.” It’s the longest song of the album, building on the slightly melancholic “Some Kind of Surprise” with its reverse-swelling intro and half-hidden brass. “Don’t Stay Away” is my personal favorite: drum machine beats, polka-esque bottom end, and high dancing synths open up to a tone-cut overdriven guitar chorus, bending and sputtering as it dies. The instrumentation details the lyrics in shade and hue, lyrics that wax on adolescent feels and wistful sentiment. Half-masked in effect, Samira writes simply and directly to counterweight the adorning glitter in songs like “Waiting For the Summer,” “Flower Tattoo,” and the hazy “Pretender.” In this album, the verbosity is best left to the rosewood and the bell bronze, the capacitors and the diodes. We wouldn’t have it any other way.
Like the sativa-dominant strain that shares its name, Supreme Blue Dream envelops listeners in a collage of emotions and tonal colors, with catchy hooks that leave indelible marks on the ears and mind. Densely textured, the album wades through waters both dreampop and psychedelic, light-hearted in its lyricism and tonality. Songs explore themes of nostalgia, infatuation, and self-awareness in calculated structure” (Feed Me With Your Kiss)

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