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Us And I Bring Some Brightness To Nostalgia

Nov 03, 05:33pm

Their strong EP ‘Loveless’ gives some dimension to 80s synth pop

Us And I is a duo based in Bangalore featuring Bidisha Kesh and Gaurav Govilkar. They make synthpop, of course one of the biggest comeback kids of the last decade. This was mostly due to the vaporwave movement (you can thank Macintosh Plus for all that) and the warm, rather charming, and old-school sounds of the genre suddenly appearing everywhere from niche spaces to The Weeknd. Nostalgia ruled for a long time, and all of us were happy. Here’s the thing. Nostalgia isn’t great. Looking forward holds much more value than looking back. Us And I’s EP ‘Loveless’ keeps the sounds but does something with it. And that’s nice.

While yes, ‘Loveless’ is all sequenced drums, arpeggiated analog synths and quiet, simple vocal melodies from Bidisha Kesh, what is actually fresh about the EP is its approach. There’s a curious lack of the moody, vapid vibe you would expect from such a release. The duo are actually writing pop songs here, with real structure, hooks and a strong musical identity. That is a much nicer implementation of this sonic palate compared to the usual “staring out of your window on a rainy morning” playlist-y stuff. The song ‘Butterflies’ is a bright, accessible tune with a great hook. ‘Phases’ has an intro that sounds like it’s made to headbang to more than anything else, and the rest of the track is built on groove and riffs (almost a very rock-like approach). ‘First Love’ is a proper ol’ ballad. The EP's opener ‘Fragile’ is a bit melancholy, but even that is couched in a strong melody. Along with some good production, Us And I shows that you don’t have to put oneself in a box just because you’ve chosen a genre. You can work with it. ‘Loveless’ is that.

 

Listen to the EP here.

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