Independent Spotlight is a continuing series on Stewart’s blog. The series revolves around independent artists and bands sending their music to Brett to review. No band is promised a positive review, and all music is reviewed honestly in an effort to better independent music.
In this evening’s Independent Spotlight, we delve into an English band that’s quite enigmatic. Ditsea Yella, a mysterious outfit with three new original tunes, blurs the lines between indie rock, electronic music, and experimental alternative. Their online presence, or lack thereof, doesn’t provide much biographical information. They seem to be a duo, however, and their image is one of mystery and vague self-description. Let’s dig into their music.
Perhaps Ditsea Yella’s ambiguous social networking is a positive thing, at least, in the context of this review. Their music stands alone and without obstruction. There isn’t anything to the act besides the music. That’s a refreshing change from indie acts that flood their social media with irrelevant information and flashy press content. Uninhibited by any of that context, I listened to their three new songs: ‘Sin Mona Lisa,’ ‘Boys And Girls,’ and ‘Vampire.’ Then, I listened to them half a dozen more times.
There’s something inherently compelling about these songs. As aforementioned, they utilize a good deal of electronic instrumentation. Complex drum machines and synthesizers envelope the sound as reverb-soaked vocals rise and fall from the madness. The female who sings lead vocals is elusive, and in honesty, it’s difficult to understand her a good deal of the time. Thus, you’re forced to lean into your speakers and take an active listening role. In actuality, it makes the experience much better. I found myself relistening to ‘Sin Mona Lisa’ over and over to dissect the lyrics. Musically, it’s top notch.
‘Boys And Girls’ is an electronic song as well, but it flirts with rock influence. Guitars and bass slide in and out of the mix. The concoction is quite original, creating a soundscape akin to a Laurie Anderson spectacle. (Seriously, it sounds like they recorded these songs fresh off of listening to ‘O Superman.’) The production quality is fantastic, and I found the mix solid without any overbearing instrumentation or misplaced audio.
‘Vampire’ feels even more experimental in nature with droning synthesizers and electronic pieces. The song creates a sense of urgency; it’s not an easy listening tune. I dig that, and the song remains powerful throughout. That brings me to a key point: each of Ditsea Yella’s tracks feel authentic and original. They aren’t recycling any idea or themes.
I’m not entirely sure how I’d classify Ditsea Yella’s new music. Hell, I’m not sure they know, either. That said, it’s completely intriguing music very much worth your time. It’s an experimental romp through electronic/rock fusion and mysterious vocalizations. I briefly checked out some of their live performances, which incorporate acoustic guitar and more traditional vocals. I’m interested to see where they go from here: they feel like a wholly unpredictable act.
Soundtrack the band is working on: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ditsea-Yella/317192088449073