Having released some fabulously ethereal singles in the shape of ‘Verónica Pass’, ‘Placelessness’, ‘Saturnining’ and ‘Crimeless’ in the past 18 months, New York-based darklings R. MISSING present the sinister beauty of ‘New Present City’.
Fronted by enigmatic Sharon Shy, R. MISSING issued their debut EP ‘Unsummering’ in 2017. From 2020, ‘Placeholder For The Night’ provided their wider breakthrough and set them on a path into a heavily reverbed glacial sub-CHROMATICS world. Indeed, the wonderful ‘Crimeless’ could have easily been mistaken for the combo originating from Portland.
Cut from a similar cloth to ‘Crimeless’ but moving at a more forlorn pace with added teardrops, ‘New Present City’ is reminiscent of DESIRE’s recent cover of the Korean folk song ‘Haenim’ featuring Soo Joo Park. It comes with a visual accompaniment directed by Dominique Eyraud and filmed in Charleroi, Belgium.
Starring Emilie Lacape, the story focuses on a lone woman in a post-apocalyptic world, seemingly the only survivor as she trapes around a desolate landscape while wearing a gas mask, asking “Why did you spare me?”
When our heroine arrives at an abandoned train station, she encounters a young teenage boy played by Nel Jude Lene. Thrilled at seeing another living being, she lets down her guard and removes her mask. What follows next is controversial… has she been assaulted or has she consented to procreation in order to save the human race? Or is he saving her life?
R. MISSING’s bleary electronic pop noir fills a gap left by CHROMATICS in their embracement of the fragility of life, with gently propelled soundscapes swathed in icy melancholia.
‘New Present City’ is available now via Terminal Echo on the usual digital platforms including https://rmissing.bandcamp.com/track/new-present-city
Text by Chi Ming Lai
23rd July 2022