Yarlie (Sweden) - 'Blush' (single)
It has taken me a while to get used to Yarlie, who splits her time between Stockholm and the north of Sweden, and who is inspired by “dark club rooms and icy cold mornings.” I suppose the latter come with the territory in northern Sweden. I wasn’t taken with her debut single ‘Wreck’, which had too much of a R&B flavour and was a little derivative of a broad U.S. scene for my money but this one, ‘Blush’, pushed all the right buttons.
The two have contrasting titles and while the earlier one was about the end of a tumultuous relationship this one concerns itself with “the pounding of your heart when you meet someone new.”
She is a self-taught pianist who has since gravitated on to electronic soundscapes, acquiring a taste for synthesised sound, working to come up with new textures, and it shows. I like the sounds she’s fashioned here. Early on there is a veritable zoo of them, from a forlorn seal via a flock of geese to the monkey enclosure. Your first reaction is that no serious song can work with such a cacophony but this one does.
Part of the reason for that is her vocal, which doesn’t quite fit the mould of the typical electro-pop proponent; it’s fresh and honest. And it’s all set to a neat little modified trap beat. Then towards the end the big synths come in and my only regret is that it does not go on a little longer beyond its three minutes to a grandstand finale.
She says, “It’s easy to tell when something’s changed in someone you know well. When something’s not right. For me, that intimacy and vulnerability, that’s what ‘Blush’ is about.” And does that come across in the song? Yes it does.
‘Blush’ is released today April 9th, with the video to follow on April 23rd.