Copenhagen’s Lyra Valenza and the UK’s Opal Tapes go way back, to 2018’s ‘Scan, Deliver‘ EP, which was released on both Valenza’s Petrola 80 and on Opal Tapes. This year, the connection thickens further with ‘Drifter94′, the debut EP from Senso, a new band fronted by Jens Konrad of Lyra Valenza, alongside friends.
Taking a swerve away from the focus on futuristic instrumental club beats made under his usual alias, throughout the four tracks on ‘Drifter94‘ we’re treated to avant-pop brilliance, with Konrad’s lyrics and triumphant voice taking centre stage in front of a dazzling array of musical sources, from stadium-rock guitar to trap-style drum production (both present on one track, ‘Run‘).
All this is not to say that those futuristic beats aren’t present — it seems that Konrad has had more than a hand in the electronic compositions here, especially so on our premiere, ‘Always On My iPhone‘, thanks to it’s harmonisation with the crisp breakbeats heard on Valenza productions, but production credits also fall to one Frederik Møller.
Name-dropping aside, the music kicks: a rolling drum beat, reminiscent of quality D&B/pop cross-over hist, keeps the track moving through it’s all-too-brief tenure. Glued together by high-gloss synths and flashes of curious and weird sound design, the highlight remains with Konrad’s voice, contrasting the familiar dread anxiety of being captured by your portable screen with an optimistic tone, matched by the saccharine production palette.
2. Always On My iPhone