Painted Girl - Familiar Trees of the North West
Familiar Trees of the North West
May 22, 2022
Rapid-fire snares welcome us into the glittering paradise of Feels Like Life and the album in general. We launch straight into a hypnotic vocal sequence. The sound is undeniably vaporwave-y, but it’s tinged with a beautiful originality. An anthem for absolutely everyone, the singer telling us that even ‘the quiet kids are shouting out loud’. The bubbling optimism is crafted perfectly. The percussion of Luxury Elite is easy to hear behind the melodic elements of the track. The amazing, percussive layering of the producers is repurposed into an eternally positive track.
I Will Satisfy eases in, more subtle than the first track. The majority of the instrumentation underpinned in sheets of low-frequency rhythm. The vocals of Skeleton Lipstick dance, slightly distorted over the muffled beats. As we proceed into the bridge and then the bridge and chorus the second time around, the huge, bouncing bassline begins to peek out from under the murky low-ends. The vocalist stands, invigorated by the engaging percussion falling all around him. His vocals are cool, a straight shot aimed directly at the listener. Extra credit for the Submarine sample at the close of the track.
Stay Passionate, Be Discrete does not take the ‘title track’ label lightly. Infectious melodies swirl underneath a steady drumbeat. The crisp vocals laid over the top, demanding the listeners attention. The hook is the sweetest bait. A Daryl Hall-esque concept delivered with the pop sensibilities of Toro Y Moi. The melody is more than able to drive the song forward in between vocal parts. A cacophony of sounds fall into rhythm, sending feet tapping to the tempo.
Shy Lover fades in with timid synth work. Setting a tone different than what we’ve heard so far. Glittering starlight notes shoot across the soundscape. And as the beat drops, we’re welcomed into another bass-heavy loop. It sounds as if we are in an intimate room with the vocalist, as we hear the party raging through insulated walls. It’s a deep bath of a track, easing into a chorus without warning, with a hook that The Isley Brothers would be proud of. The lyrics balance sincerity and playfulness so fantastically.
The Pleasure starts in the maelstrom of distorted synths raining down around us and the vocalist. Percussion and notes spurt out of the main rhythm. The vocalist stays with us, as we travel with him through the centre of the track. The laser-powered hook melody paints a synthwave aesthetic, as the euphoria glitches wonderfully, we come out of the main body of the track. The two artists have an undeniable chemistry.
Holiday’s fast-paced wide-eyed sound is refreshing. It hunkers down suddenly as the vocals play out. But the loop is so catchy that as it rises again, the feeling is undeniable. The carefree nature of the lyrics and vocal melody, mixing with the surprisingly emotive instrumentation is perfect.
Dangerous Love hits us like it’s come straight out of Vice City. Again, the vocalist sounding extra cool offer jagged, singular guitar notes. The 80s aesthetic concept of a ‘Dangerous Love’ is presented so well. The menacing, mischievousness of the chorus hook. The vocalist singing out triumphantly over the verse instrumentation. This is the song that puts the duo on a stage before us in a twighlight Florida setting. The sound is fantastically crafted. Dangerous Love II picks up the pace considerably as the chase starts. We speed away from the setting, under halcyon lights that pass in a glimpse. With the radio on full blast, we’ve made it out of trouble, and as we cruise toward the hills, the glistening stars welcome us into the cloak of night.