Random Jam of the Week 023

CHVRCHES has absolutely blown up this year; their March EP was a success, and their full-length debut, The Bones of What You Believe, dropped this fall to considerable acclaim. While I personally don’t love all of their stuff, I get it. Theirs is a relentless, sometimes bombastic synth-pop sound that merges dance and indie-pop. The Glasgow-based trio generally avoids guitars and relies instead on all kinds of maturely crafted, dancy elements — from synths to pitched-down effects to tons of vocal samples and hooks. There’s just a lot of hard-driving electro-pop noise going on here, and sometimes it can seem almost unforgiving, but what brings and keeps it all together is Lauren Mayberry’s voice. Her vocals are wonderfully multifaceted — at times she’s soft and fragile, then sharp and confident elsewhere — and serve as the heart of the band’s sound. Even so, they sometimes get lost in the noise. It appears London producer Tourist feels the same way, as on his remix of “Lies,” he’s stripped everything down significantly, isolating Mayberry’s vocals in an awesomely stark, piano-backed buildup. The track also features a nifty call-and-response section and some of Tourist’s distinctive backing vocal loops. A beautiful remix.

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