Tag: Dawn To Dawn (Page 1 of 2)


Making up for lost time and revenue since 2020, the music industry really went to town on their various income streams in 2023…

Albums were being released in multiple coloured vinyl editions with the same content, sometimes as many as eight versions… while this helped in inflating physical chart positions for marketing purposes, it also gave an incorrect perception of success. As Stephen Morris from NEW ORDER once remarked to Smash Hits back in 1983: “If you believe in the charts, then you may as well believe in fairies…”

With Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino declaring that concert ticket prices were generally too low and that artists could easily “charge a bit more”, this was exactly what quite a few did and there was a noticeable price hike observed across all levels over the year.

But what about the music? This year’s song listing was quite straightforward to compile, with a smaller shortlist compared to previous years with DURAN DURAN, KITE, PISTON DAMP, LEATHERS, DELERIUM and LADYTRON missing the final 30.

Just a note that ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK has never compiled an albums list, due to long form releases now having a much longer gestation period than in the past. Therefore, songs are a much better representation of the music from a calendar year. If you like the song, then check out the parent album or EP if applicable via your chosen music platform…

Selected from tracks available on the usual online retail platforms with a restriction of one song per artist moniker (so yes NINA, John Grant,  Finlay Shakespeare and Laura Bailey each appear twice but in different combinations), here are the ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK’s 30 SONGS OF 2023 listed in alphabetical order…


Hailing from Melbourne in Australia, Brigitte Bardini is the latest artist to embrace her dark side having begun as an acoustic singer songwriter. Moving away from the dreampop and shoegaze of her earlier material, ‘Start A Fire’ captured an alluring gothique on top of a gritty dance tempo while simultaneously haunting and melodic. The stylised rage was sinister stuff but aurally and visually absorbing.

Available on the BRIGITTE BARDINI single ‘Start A Fire’ via Ruby Valley Records


BEBORN BETON Dancer In The Dark

Not a rework of Bruce Springsteen, the brilliant ‘Dancer In The Dark’ saw BEBORN BETON managing to out Camouflage CAMOUFLAGE with an infectious pop sensibility that more than likely came from front man and lyric writer Stefan Netschio’s love of DURAN DURAN. With another Cold War looming as if The Berlin Wall never fell, ‘Dancer In The Dark’ was a message to remain positive in the face of adversity.

Available on the BEBORN BETON album ‘Darkness Falls Again’ via Dependent Records



A product of lockdown, BLACKCARBURNING is the solo vehicle of Mark Hockings with the lead singer of MESH taking on multiple roles including programming and production. The spikey throbbing energy of ‘The Mirror’ provided a dark disco highlight away from the parent band’s template. “I’m just generally a fan of arpeggiated bass lines” he said, “I don’t think you can go far wrong with a repetitive sequence and a Roland drum machine”.

Available on the BLACKCARBURNING album ‘Watching Sleepers’ via COP International



With Lloyd Cole “excited to still be finding new methods, new perspectives, new sounds”, the standout song ‘The Idiot’ from his Chris Hughes’ produced album ‘On Pain’ gave a touching synth-laden narrative on the relationship between David Bowie and Iggy Pop as they relocated to Berlin in 1976 in an imagined conversation as the pair escaped their narcotic dependency while cycling to the studio and discothèque.

Available on the LLOYD COLE album ‘On Pain’ via earMUSIC


CREEP SHOW The Bellows

A supergroup comprising of John Grant and the trio WRANGLER comprising of Stephen Mallinder, Ben Benge Edwards and Phil Winter, CREEP SHOW released their acclaimed debut album ‘Mr Dynamite’ in 2018. Utilising a punchy backing track, ‘The Bellows’ was like a blippy PET SHOP BOYS with layers of treated and vocodered vocals before being countered by enticing Middle Eastern resonances in the synth solo.

Available on the CREEP SHOW album ‘Yawning Abyss’ via Bella Union


DAWN TO DAWN Seventh Floor

Their first new track from DAWN TO DAWN since their 2022 debut album ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’, the Montreal trio of solo artist Tess Roby with THE BEAT ESCAPE’s Adam Ohr and Patrick Lee conjured images of headlights on night drives with the shimmering story of love and lust that was ‘Seventh Floor’. With dreamy synthscapes and hypnotic drum machine, this was a wonderfully understated dance number.

Available on the DAWN TO DAWN digital single ‘Seventh Floor’ via SSURROUNDSS



Creating their own “Feraltropolis”, the palette of tools on ‘Truth Is The New Gold’ saw FERAL FIVE use traditional instruments, electronica and AI voicing in a quirky but accessible fashion for a commentary on today’s strangely dystopian post-truth world. Exploring the theme of light pollution, the fine squelch laden ‘Silver Sky’ saw great vocals and backing reminiscent of INTERNATIONAL TEACHERS OF POP and DUBSTAR meeting GOLDFRAPP.

Available on the FERAL FIVE album ‘Truth Is The New Gold’ via Reckless Yes


FRAGRANCE. Much More Like A Wave – M!R!M Remix

Matthieu Roche is the enigmatic Parisian behind FRAGRANCE. whose debut ‘Dust & Disorders’ was expanded in 2023 with five new tracks. The first remix from it came in the shape of an excellent ‘Much More Like A Wave’ rework by London-based Italian producer M!R!M. “I love his take on the song” said Roche, “I always felt that the chorus of this song could work as an anthem and he definitely achieved that with his remix”

Available on the FRAGRANCE. digital single ‘Much More Like A Wave – M!R!M Remix’ via Sugarcane Recordings


GLÜME Dangerous Blue

Following the acclaim for her debut ‘The Internet’ and her first liev appearences, the second Glüme album ‘Main Character’ with high profile guests such as Sean Ono Lennon and Rufus Wainwright was set to elevate her to the next level. However, things did not quite work out that way with health and financial concerns by the end of the year. ‘Dangerous Blue’ was one of the sparkling highlights despite its cooing melancholy.

Available on the GLÜME album ‘Main Character’ via Italians Do It Better



Formally of synth-tinged Portland band FRINGE CLASS, Madeline Goldstein presented her best single yet in ‘Seed Of Doubt’ to launch her ‘Other World’ EP. With a wider narrative on “the restlessness of alienation and isolation, the longing to move, to feel power, and to flee”, ‘Seed Of Doubt’ was a brooding slice of gothwave in a manner tinged with some ghostly allure thanks to a haunting soprano delivery.

Available on the self-released MADELINE GOLDSTEIN EP ‘Other World’


JORI HULKKONEN featuring JOHN GRANT I’m Going To Hell

“For my 50th birthday I wanted to do something a bit special” said Jori Hulkkonen, “however, the list of realistic projects quickly narrowed down on yet another album. I did manage to invite some friends and heroes to be featured on it, though.” The album assembled an impressive supporting cast; displaying his love of PET SHOP BOYS, hearing John Grant with his rich baritone on a house-driven pop track like ‘I’m Going To Hell’ was pure joy.

Available on the JORI HULKKONEN album ‘There Is Light Hidden In These Shadows’ via Blanco & Tinto Recordings



ITALOCONNECTION’s long player ‘Nordisko’ came with a twist by paying tribute to pop from the Nordic region via a collection of cover versions. Written by Jay-Jay Johanson, his marvellous 2002 tune ‘On The Radio’ was given an airy feminine disco makeover featuring Jaia Sowden on vocals. With absorbent sequences and glistening keys, it was a fine disco friendly shapeshift from the artpop original.

Available on the ITALOCONNECTION album ‘Nordisko’ via Mordisco / Blanco Y Negro



Athens-based Finn Jaakko Eino Kalevi sought to find beauty in the chaotic nature of the everyday on his new double album ‘Chaos Magic’. One of its many highlights ‘The Chamber Of Love’ bore a resemblance to WHAM! “I wrote the song before I ever heard ‘Everything She Wants’ but the arrangement was different” the Finn said, “I love ‘Everything She Wants’ so I arranged this song sounding more like that. It is more electronic now…”

Available on the JAAKKO EINO KALEVI album ‘Chaos Magic’ via Weird World / Domino Recording Co



When artists are mutual fans, it can lead to collaborative possibilities and even ‘Lust’. KID MOXIE and NINA teamed up via Italians Do It Better to capture a seductive film-noir tension within a fantasy world with the EP launched by a cover of ‘Waiting For The Night’, a song made famous by Jennifer Lopez. With a cool air of enigmatic mystery, the downtempo synthwave treatment on ‘Lust’ exuded a sensual anticipation of consummation in their duet.

Available on the KID MOXIE & NINA EP ‘Lust’ via Italians Do It Better



KNIGHT$ What Planet Did You Come From?

The first new music from KNIGHT$ since 2021, the vibrant hook-laden Eurobeat of ‘What Planet Did You Come From? (Baby)’ threw in the kitchen sink with synth, sax and vocoder. With shades of Patrick Cowley’s work for Sylvester and Bobby Orlando’s Divine productions, it affirmed that James Knights’ Britalo was just the tonic in these difficult times despite highlighting existential issues closer to home.

Available on the KNIGHT$ EP ‘$auna Mu$ik’ via Specchio Uomo



From their third album ‘Strange Disciple’ themed around “toxic infatuation”, the fittingly titled ‘I Will Never Learn’ summed up life’s trials and tribulations in a wonderful example of why NATION OF LANGUAGE appeal so much in their glorious mix of synths, live bass, sequencers and electronic percussion. A haunting girly falsetto howl provided a beautiful touch alongside their usual NEW ORDER, OMD and ULTRAVOX influences.

Available on the NATION OF LANGUAGE album ‘Strange Disciple’ via PIAS



Having impressed with her first NEU-ROMANCER EP ‘Neue Romantika’ earlier in 2023 while touring the world with ZANIAS, Berlin-based Australian Laura Bailey ended the year with the cowbell heavy Hi-NRG romp ‘Burning Eyes’ on CURSES’ enjoyable album ‘Next Wave Acid Punx DEUX’ compilation. It made use of both her vocal and bass prowess which were less prominent on her largely instrumental debut release.

Available on the compilation album ‘Next Wave Acid Punx DEUX’ (V/A) via Eskimo Recordings


NNHMN Soldier of Beauty

As NNHMN, wife and husband “non-humans” Lee Margot and Michal Laudarg have been encapsulating these unsettling times in music. Adapting their dark electronic body style with more varied dance elements on their appropriately titled ‘Circle of Doom’ album, courtesy of a particularly hypnotic bassline, the wonderful serene glory of ‘Soldier of Beauty’ gave the viewpoint that the only honest thing to fight for is peace.

Available on the NNHMN album ‘Circle of Doom’ via Young and Cold Records


OMD Look At You Now

Derived from a Paul Humphreys demo with the working title of ‘Zimmer Frame for Andy’, this came bursting with the usual OMD hooks and was perhaps only missing a Paul Humphreys lead vocal. Lyrics such as “When the energy is gone and the feeling is just wrong” and “The power in your hand is pouring out like sand” pointed towards the ‘Bauhaus Staircase’ album’s political themes on the blind stupidity of Brexit.

Available on the OMD album ‘Bauhaus Staircase’ via 100% Records


PAGE Det Här Är Mitt Sätt

Although the ‘En Ny Våg’ album title song took the PAGE “Numanisation” process to its zenith by featuring Chris Payne, outstripping it was the excellent jaunty robopop of ‘Det Här Är Mitt Sätt’. Within its four chord progression, there were catchy riffs and some fabulous vintage Moog soloing in what was originally conceived as a homage to ‘Fade To Grey’, song which Payne co-wrote.

Available on the PAGE album ‘En Ny Våg’ via Energy Rekords


THE REMAINDER Broken Manhole Cover

As well as Neil Arthur, THE REMAINDER also comprises Liam Hutton and Finlay Shakespeare, both members of the live BLANCMANGE family. The excellent dance friendly ‘Broken Manhole Cover’ recalled LCD SOUNDSYSTEM and it was all intentional as Neil Arthur told ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK “you’ll hear me singing via a gated tremolo FX the words ‘LCD SOUNDSYSTEM’ most of the way through the song.”

Available on THE REMAINDER album ‘Evensong’ via by Blanc Check Ltd




R. MISSING All Alone With Seas

Fronted by enigmatic Sharon Shy, having released enough singles this year to make up an album, R. MISSING are in danger of falling under the radar with the bubbly electronic pop noir of ‘All Alone With Seas’ almost passing by unnoticed despite being one of their best songs of late. A long playing release, while old fashioned and not playing the modern streaming algorithms, may provide the focal point that the New York-based duo deserve.

Available on the R. MISSING single ‘All Alone With Seas’ via Terminal Echo



Covered by acts as diverse CARTER THE UNSTOBBALE SEX MACHINE and Liza Minnelli, the latest interpretation of PET SHOP BOYS stark narrative of a kept woman came via this wispy account by Swedish duo SALLY SHAPIRO. Keeping the original theme of relationship dependency close to its heart but offering an icier Nordic vision from a female perspective, Neil Tennant said “We’ve heard it! The chorus in particular sounds good”.

Available on the SALLY SHAPIRO single ‘Rent’ via Italians Do It Better


DIE SEXUAL Bound, I Rise

From out of the shadows to under the strobe lights, DIE SEXUAL are the Los Angeles-based wife-and-husband duo of Rosselinni and Anton Floriano, the latter part of BLACK LIGHT ODYSSEY who remixed the DEPECHE MODE bonus track ‘Oh Well’. Their dark electronic influences examine themes of domination and submission with the seductive ‘Bound, I Rise’ seeing the bottom switch to the top in a hypnotic EBM friendly stomper.

Available on DIE SEXUAL EP ‘Bound’ via A System Exclusive / Hush Ltd.



“It’s an absolute rip off of OMD’s ‘2nd Thought’!” admitted Finlay Shakespeare of his glorious ‘Illusion + Memory’ album highlight ‘Ready Ready’. Almost Motorik in presence with a wonderfully pulsing drive and gorgeous synth tones, our hero doesn’t refrain from thoughts about “feeling at home through just a voice on the shortwave, when in fact you don’t know where you are and you could be in the crosshairs at any time and place.”

Available on the FINLAY SHAKESPEARE album ‘Illusion + Memory’ via Alter


SIERRA Stronger

Parisian producer Annelise Morel has been quietly impressing audiences over the past few years as SIERRA with her brand of intriguing darkwave. After several EP releases, her debut album ‘A Story Of Anger’ was a major artistic leap forward. Including collaborations with Carpenter Brut and HEALTH, the standout track was her autobiographical statement ‘Stronger’.

Available on the SIERRA album ‘A Story Of Anger’ via Universal Music


SOFT CELL The Day The World Turned Day-Glo

Always adept at doing covers having had hits with ‘Tainted Love’ and ‘What’, SOFT CELL presented a brilliant electro tribute to Poly Styrene with ‘The Day The World Turned Day-Glo’. Taking a musical leaf out of ‘Sex Dwarf’ with Dave Ball making his syndrums and synths sound so menacing yet accessible, while Marc Almond delivers a vocal recalling the anguish of ‘Martin’ with sleazy sax passages resonating with the dystopian lyrics.

Available on the SOFT CELL album ‘*Happiness now completed’ via BMG


SOFTWAVE Taking Life For Granted

Despite its positive pop sound, the reflective lyrics on the second SOFTWAVE album ‘things we’ve done’ highlighted the challenges of living in a modern world full of dualities. ‘Taking Life For Granted’ saw the Danish duo of Catrine Christensen and Jerry Olsen go all ABBA-esque with someone “lacking gratitude” under attack, although the rousing chorus and a particularly joyous instrumental break gave the infinite hope.

Available on the SOFTWAVE album ‘things we’ve done’ via Electro Shock Records



A fabulous cover of the Italo flavoured Kim Wilde B-side to ‘The Second Time’ from 1984, the throbbing ‘Lovers On A Beach’ is NINA sounding sexier than ever before. Ricky Wilde said “I just thought there was a little bit more that it needed that I maybe wanted to add back in the day”. With sharp spikey edges boosting the trancey template, he provided a superb extended end section that paid homage to Giorgio Moroder in the best way possible.

Available on the RICKY WILDE X NINA album ‘Scala Hearts’ via New Retro Wave



ZANIAS Lovelife

Following one of the most traumatic periods of her life, Alison Lewis returned as her solo alter-ego Zoe Zanias to present ‘Chrysalis’.  As the title suggests, it was a rebirth. With glorious arpeggios and lush synth strings, ‘Lovelife’ was bolstered with bass guitar by live bandmate Laura Bailey aka NEU-ROMANCER while an array of pitch-shifted voice samples acted as an abstract lead vocal before the actual one kicked in.

Available on the ZANIAS album ‘Chrysalis’ via Fleisch


A selection of ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK’s favourite music of 2023 featuring 230+ tracks has been compiled for its ‘Initial After Brilliance’ playlist

Text by Chi Ming Lai
7 December 2023


During lockdown, electronic music displayed its emotional empathy with isolation and solitary working.

But as during The Cold War in its breakthrough years, it read the room again with the onset of worldwide and domestic conflicts, both armed and political. There were times in 2022 that were as if The Cold War had never ended and in amongst the turmoil, artists reflected their anxieties on top of those already existing.

Jori Hulkkonen of SIN COS TAN said: “Overall, this decade has been a real downer with the pandemic and now the war, so if we are trying to look for silver linings here, I think it will be interesting for the creative community to get something out of it, the frustration, the fears and all that.”

As further pandemic songs were released as well, what emerged were songs of varying moods and while there was fresh optimising in the air, there were calls to arms and resignation looming too. Overall, 2022 saw many great individual tracks issued and mention must be made of NNHMN, NATION OF LANGUAGE, O+HER, DIE ROBO SAPIENS, DESIRE and MOTHERMARY who were among those shortlisted for this year’s listing.

As ever on ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK, rules help control the fun… so restricted to tracks available on the usual online retail platforms with a limit of one song per artist moniker, here are the 30 SONGS OF 2022 in alphabetical order by artist…

ANNIEE featuring VON HERTZOG Danger Electricity

Bubbling with a dynamic thrust, the angelic voice of Anniee evoked the excitement of a night clubbing while Von Hertzog provided the hypnotic backing and beautiful soundscape. “I was jogging in London and came across the words in the sidewalk ‘danger electricity’” she said, “I had always wanted to create a dance track – something that reflected my love for EDM”.

Available on the single ‘Danger Electricity’ via Anniee and Von Hertzog



For Alanas Chosnau and Mark Reeder, the ongoing world tensions were a symbol of ‘Life Everywhere’. Like a Harry Palmer film given an electro soundtrack and hidden behind the facade of love songs, they poignantly made a statement on life during wartime. With a speedy conga mantra and a dominant digital clap, ‘All You Need Is Love’ entered funky electronic disco territory.

Available on the album ‘Life Everywhere’ via MFS




Despite questioning selective memories on his second album ‘Memory Box’, with ‘The Winter Palace’, Rodney Cromwell was wanting to forget a former beau because “I dream of you regardless, whether I am asleep or awake”. With hints of classic NEW ORDER and OMD, the wonderfully icy number embraced motorik mechanisation and a glorious synth solo for a hopeful uplift.

Available on the album ‘Memory Box’ via Happy Robots Records


BOY HARSHER Machina featuring Ms. BOAN

BOY HARSHER made a short horror movie ‘The Runner’ and a soundtrack to go with it. Although comprising of their usual dark and danceable electronic pop, it featured several special guests. Sung in Spanish and English, ‘Machina’ featuring Ms. BOAN aka Mariana Saldaña was aimed at the dancefloor, recalling the Latino electronic disco of Bobby Orlando, particularly PET SHOP BOYS ‘A Man Could Get Arrested’.

Available on the album ‘The Runner’ via Nude Club / City Slang


CIRCUIT3 Valentina Fly

For his third CIRCUIT3 album, Peter Fitzpatrick presented a retro-futuristic narrative on the world before the space shuttle. Valentina Tereshkova whose 1963 adventure in Vostok 6 made her the first woman in space was celebrated with ‘Valentina Fly’, the wonderful piece evoking OMD. “She’s not a celebrated as Yuri Gagarin” said the Dubliner, but “in some respects, what she achieved was much greater.”

Available on the album ‘Technology For The Youth’ via https://circuit3.bandcamp.com/



If Yoko Ono’s ‘Walking On Thin Ice’ had been reconfigured as a Balearic friendly electronic disco number, then it would have come out like ‘Tongue Tied’, the title track of the second album by Gemma Cullingford. With a nonchalant but sensual vocal style reminiscent of Sarah Nixey, ‘Tongue Tied’ exuded a positive if nervous energy in a purer metronomic adoption of electronics. Shyness is nice…

Available on the album ‘Tongue Tied’ via Elmo Recordings



Canadian danceable dreampop trio DAWN TO DAWN celebrated the joy of music in times of adversity with ‘Stereo’. Driven by a Roland TR909, the song touched on the acceptance of confinement where “I wait for no one to ask ‘when do we go?’”. In its romantic reflection of good times, a breezy infectious allure was captured with a promise of better things to come.

Available on the album ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ via SSURROUNDSS



Since Sarah Blackwood and Chris Wilkie reconfigured DUBSTAR as a duo, there was always the impression that the comeback album ‘One’ was a warm-up. Opening album ‘Two’  was ‘Token’; co-produced by Stephen Hague, it pointed to his work with PET SHOP BOYS and ERASURE. Its narrative about leaving behind abusive relationships and minor gestures was a topic that many could relate to.

Available on the album ‘Two’ via Northern Writes


EMMON The Battle

Since releasing her first sassy pop album ‘The Art & The Evil’ in 2007, Emma Nylen has got progressively darker and harder while still retaining an enigmatic presence. While most of her ‘Recon’ album headed in an EBM direction, synthpop was the sound on the ‘Black Celebration’ inflected mission that was ‘The Battle’, a timely commentary on world and deomestic events.

Available on the album ‘Recon’ via Icons Creating Real Art


FADER Serpentine

As with previous FADER works, Benge worked alone on the instrumentation in Cornwall while Neil Arthur did his lyrics and vocals. Their third album together ‘Quartz’ was inspired by incidental atmospheric music used in vintage TV shows. Minimalistic structures provided a reflective and elegiac backdrop. The icy waltz ‘Serpentine’ opened the album with its sparse keys like Gary Numan meeting Brian Eno.

Available on the album ‘Quartz’ via Blanc Check Records



A reinterpretation of THE CARS’ mournful classic’, this chilling version of ‘Drive’ by THE GOLDEN FILTER simply captured the zeitgeist in amongst the turmoil of world events… the work of Penelope Trappes and Stephen Hindman, the duo defied people not to well up on hearing the words “Who’s gonna tell you when it’s too late? Who’s gonna tell you things aren’t so great?”.

Available on the single ‘Drive’ via The Golden Filter


H/P Vicinities

H/P were formally known as HAPPINESS PROJECT, issuing their first album in 2008. For their H/P debut ‘Programma’, the trio not only shortened their moniker but also adopted a minimal synth approach. Acknowledging the debt of influence to cult French act MARTIN DUPONT, ‘Vicinities’ appled a complex spiral of delicate blips, while was enclosed is an emotional centre that recalled OMD.

Available on the album ‘Programma’ via BOREDOMproduct



Adopting the dishevelled persona of a satanic Libertas, ‘War’ by I SPEAK MACHINE was another album that captured the zeitgeist. With hints of Gary Numan, the screeching title song set the scene. “It definitely has ‘Metal’ in there as an influence” she said, “It came about from me messing with my Casio SK1 and then running that through a Moogerfooger ClusterFlux to make it all bendy and provide actual notes from the feedback.”

Available on the album ‘War’ via https://ispeakmachine.bandcamp.com/


KAREN HUNTER Don’t Call My Name

Karen Hunter was a Gary Numan live band member between 1984-85 and recorded a wonderful cover of the ballad ‘Don’t Call My Name’ in support of The Ced Sharpley Drumming Bursary. The original was on the 1988 album ‘Metal Rhythm’ and given a serene feminine twist. Produced by music veteran Steve Hunter, Numan associates Chris Payne and Andy Coughlan also contributed.

Available as a digital single ‘Don’t Call My Name’ via Living Ornaments



Vincent Belorgey aka Kavinsky made his name with ‘Night Call’. But it was featured in the cult movie ‘Drive’, the Frenchman found it was an albatross around his neck. He upset people when he said “f*ck that ‘synthwave’ stuff as u name it”.  Now ‘Reborn’, channelling his inner Moroder circa ‘Midnight Express’, ‘Outsider’ was a magnificent instrumental laced with orchestrated drama and tension.

Available on the album ‘Reborn’ via Record Makers / Protovision



Taking both musical and lyrical inspiration from DEPECHE MODE’s ‘Never Let Me Down Again’, there were darker and harder aesthetics at play on ‘Shine’ with KID MOXIE assertively declaring “I’m taking the lead in the back seat”. “We definitely channelled some DM vibes” she remembered, “it was even a running joke while we were in studio recording it with FADERHEAD”.

Available on the album ‘Better Than Electric’ via Pasadena Records


KITE Panic Music

“Sweden’s best kept pop-secret” returned with ‘Panic Music’ and exuded a fierce anxiety with front man Nicklas Stenemo presenting his characteristic screaming delivery. Over an epic neo-gothic backdrop now associated with KITE, Christian Berg continued his fascination for electronic drones and swoops while there was also the surprise of a guitar solo. The stress and strain of the past two years was captured in song.

Available on the digital single ‘Panic Music’ via Astronaut Recordings



From Vancouver in British Columbia, ACTORS keyboardist Shannon Hemmett continued with her more synth focussed solo project LEATHERS. Not completely divorced from the main band family, frontman Jason Corbett acts as producer and collaborator, just as Daniel Hunt did with Helen Marnie on her solo work during the LADYTRON hiatus. ‘Runaway’ was gorgeous dreamy synthpop to elope to.

Available on the digital single ‘Runaway’ via Artoffact Records


MECHA MAIKO Sunny, Softly (I Feel Love)

Hayley Stewart returned as MECHA MAIKO with ‘NOT OK’ to highlight the social-political flashpoints that emerged during the pandemic. But focussing on warmer moments and feeling the force of some mighty electro, ‘Sunny, Softly (I Feel Love)’ threw in the iconic throb from the Giorgio Moroder produced Donna Summer hit for a glorious beat driven statement enhanced by an angelic delivery.

Available on the album ‘NOT OK’ via New Retro Wave



Sister and brother duo MINIMAL SCHLAGER began in 2020 as a consequence of the pandemic. Based between London and Berlin, Alicia Macanás and Francisco Parisi began to develop a brand of synth heavy dreampop. While bubbling with glistening synths, ‘Submission’ was a more of a new wave number with subtle guitar and a rhythmic bounce that set it apart from the other songs on their first album.

Available on the album ‘Love, Sex & Dreams’ via Duchess Box Records


R.MISSING New Present City

Fronted by enigmatic Sharon Shy, having released some fabulously ethereal singles in the past 18 months, New York-based darklings R. MISSING presented the sinister beauty of ‘New Present City’. In their embracement of the fragility of life with gently propelled soundscapes swathed in icy melancholia, this slice of electronic pop noir fittingly filled a gap left by the now disbanded CHROMATICS.

Available on the digital single ‘New Present City’ via Terminal Echo



‘The Inevitable End’ in 2014 was said to be the final RÖYKSOPP album but after various singles and soundtracks, they returned with the ‘Profound Mysteries’ trilogy. Featuring Alison Goldfrapp, the delicious ‘Impossible’ was a mighty avant disco excursion with a seductive high soprano middle eight drifting into an intergalactic twist.

Available on the album ‘Profound Mysteries’ via Dog Triumph


HANNA RUA Light In Your Dark

Swedish songstress Hanna Rua has a dreamy electronic pop sensibility with the emphasis on the pop, but her debut EP ‘Light Up Your Dark’ also demonstrated her scope and capability using darker aesthetics. With a wonderfully gritty austere, the title song played with gothier influences while remaining melodic, coming over like a Nordic NINA in her more recent work in a battle against the demons.

Available on the EP ‘Light Up Your Dark’ via Aztec Records



Although they announced a retirement of sorts in 2016, Swedish duo SALLY SHAPIRO joined the Italian Do It Better family in 2021 to make an unexpected return. ‘Fading Away’ was an epic dance tune where an atmospheric template was merged with a relentless disco synthwave hybrid, utilising a glorious plethora of trancey electronics and thumping rhythms across its seven minutes.

Available on the album ‘Sad Cities’ via Italians Do It Better



With the bear next door, the title of SIN COS TAN’s fourth album ‘Living In Fear’ resonated with anyone resident in Finland or anywhere in the civilised world; “Do you fear the dark, love, war, or yourself? Whatever the answer, you can be certain: Fear is a powerful thing.” The windswept electro-motorik of ‘Endless’ used the melodic synthy highs of OMD to counter the melancholic expression.

Available on the album ‘Living In Fear’ via Solina Records


SOFT CELL Nighthawks

The tense industrialised pulse of ‘Nighthawks’ recalled the sweaty alternative club overtures of one-time Some Bizzare stable mates CABARET VOLTAIRE. Featuring a deranged expletive laden rap from drag performance artist Christeene, SOFT CELL fans were even treated to the deep growly voice of Mr Ball himself alongside Marc Almond while ‘Staying Alive’ backing vocals provided another counterpoint.

Available on the album ‘*Happiness Not Included’ via BMG



Documenting a period of personal struggle, the new UNIFY SEPARATE album attempted ‘Closure’ which set the scene with a building atmospheric trance tune that simply mesmerised, especially when front man Andrew Montgomery hit his trademark falsetto. Instrumentalist Leo Josefsson cited influences such as MODERAT, NITZER EBB, UNDERWORLD and FRONT 242.

Available on the album ‘Music Since Tomorrow’ via How Music Group



With shades of Alison Goldfrapp, Hannah Peel and the often forgotten Stella Grundy, the positively feline and angelic ‘Cold Breeze’ was the London-based Aussie Bella Unwin’s best song yet. The additional production and mix by Finlay Shakespeare boosted the punchy and immediate machine funk that was laced with wispy and alluringly coy vocals.

Available on the single ‘Cold Breeze’ via GOTO Records


THE WEEKND Less Than Zero

THE WEEKND again reminded the mainstream of the emotive beauty that can come from classic synthpop with ‘Less Than Zero’. ‘Less Than Zero’ itself sounded not unlike Michael Jackson produced by Tony Mansfield. The cross of catchy hooks, glorious counter-melodies and acoustic strums were reminiscent of Mansfield’s own combo NEW MUSIK who went produced most of A-HA’s debut album.

Available on the album ‘Dawn FM’ via by XO / Republic Records


xPROPAGANDA The Wolves Are Returning

Porduced by Stephen J Lipson, a stark warning on rise again of the far right was highlighted on ‘The Wolves Are Returning’. The message coming from two Germans whose grandparents’ generation had made the mistake of opening up the door to the Nazis and “did nothing” was poignant. Claudia Brücken and Susanne Freytag provided a worthy follow-up to ‘A Secret Wish’ as xPROPAGANDA.

Available on the album ‘The Heart is Strange’ via ZTT Records


A selection of ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK’s favourite music of 2022 is featured in its ‘Stay Negative To Be Positive’ playlist

Text by Chi Ming Lai
12th December 2022

DAWN TO DAWN Postcards From The Sun To The Moon

First coming together in late 2018, Montreal trio DAWN TO DAWN are releasing their first full length album ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’.

Comprising of Tess Roby, Adam Ohr and Patrick Lee, DAWN TO DAWNDAWN TO DAWN combines Roby’s forlorn introspection as heard on her first two solo albums ‘Beacon’ and ‘Ideas Of Space’ with Ohr and Lee’s dance-derived templates as THE BEAT ESCAPE.

With no-one style dominating over the other, this sonic sandwich has produced an intriguing sound to be savoured.

A slow burner in its realisation, the songs were created through communal jam sessions with off-the-cuff lyrical interventions before editing and processing. With a gentile start, ‘Anniversary’ drifts into the ether to welcome the listener into the world of DAWN TO DAWN with ethereal vocals, synthetic soundscapes and absorbing drum machine mantras.

‘Meridian’ is a fine example of this more uptempo approach of DAWN TO DAWN compared to solo Tess Roby productions; while the songs have a dreamy melancholy in common, moving from low to high in its fabulous multi-faceted vocal arrangement, there is a understated danceable quality within the subtle textures.

Expanding the template, ‘Care’ is interesting and unconventional in that a sung lyric doesn’t appear until almost halfway through the track. Nocturnal yet rhythmic, with an alluring folk-tinged vocal to offset the understated synthetic overtures, there are enigmatic skatted vocals in the vein of Dot Allison for the first two minutes before Roby presents her more coherent contralto over its hypnotic synthbass and crisp rhythmic construction.

Adopting a bouncing percussive groove, ‘Samba’ features some very absorbing multi-layers and manages to not be too forceful while almost harp led, ‘A Colour Named By You’ is much sparser and devoid of drum machine, coming over more audibly reminiscent of Tess Roby’s own solo work.

Presenting an important message, the trance soundscapes of ‘Ecology’ are crystalline and hypnotic in their aural expression which could even be considered to be romantic. ‘With U’ is proof that danceable rhythmic music can be understated and doesn’t need to be overtly loud with hints of Finnish duo SIN COS TAN in its pretty keyboard motifs.

Meanwhile ‘Stereo’ captures that joy of music which can be a communal or solitary experience, functional or incidental, is marvellously infectious with a breezy allure captured and understated synthesized danceability.

Acting as a fine and fitting closing number, the beautiful ‘Lanes’ is inspired by the tranquillity and seasonal deserts of British seaside towns like Brighton; with a soft forlorn air and the eerie moods of the late Julee Cruise, it displays an artistic kinship with Jorja Chalmers whose recent album ‘Midnight Train’ was inspired by her home seaside town of Margate.

‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ is a wonderful toe-tapping record that captures the 2am wind down of a house party where some people still want to dance, albeit in more a more tranquil, less boisterous manner while others quietly do some tidying up but no-one wants to leave yet. As DAWN TO DAWN themselves say “this album is meant to be enjoyed with or without a fixed destination in mind”.

‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ is released by SSURROUNDSS in CD and digital formats, available via https://dawntodawn.bandcamp.com/album/postcards-from-the-sun-to-the-moon






Text by Chi Ming Lai
Photo by Christopher Honeywell
6th October 2022

DAWN TO DAWN Interview

A union between Montreal electronic duo THE BEAT ESCAPE and fellow Canadian singer / songwriter Tess Roby, DAWN TO DAWN first met in 2018. Inspired by their developing friendship, the trio began to make music together.

Adam Ohr and Patrick Lee have one album ‘Life Is Short The Answer Is Long’ to their name as THE BEAT ESCAPE; released on Simon Raymonde’s Bella Union, it contained tracks such as ‘Sign Of Age’ which displayed an icy intelligent dance music affinity with Finnish duo SIN COS TAN.

Meanwhile, Tess Roby issued her debut album ‘Beacon’ on Italians Do It Better in 2018; but she took the plunge to showcase her brand of emotive folktronica independently by releasing the follow-up ‘Ideas of Space’ on her own SSURROUNDSS label earlier in 2022.

DAWN TO DAWN are about to be release their debut long player ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’. As their moniker suggests, they capture a circadian feel in their music, adapting to the natural human consciousness. With enticing synth soundscapes and Tess Roby’s forlorn vocal as the common threads, the album is lively and beat-laden at its most social yet understated, then introspective but positive as near-sleep sets in.

Tess Roby, Adam Ohr and Patrick Lee settled down with ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK for a chat about the making of ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’…

What inspired you all to get into a collaborative project?

Tess: I released ‘Beacon’ on April 20th, 2018, while Patrick and Adam released THE BEAT ESCAPE album the week after – I had heard about them for ages, always curious as to who they were. We connected at a show a few months later and said we should get together in the studio. In November 2018 we had our first studio session, which is when we wrote ‘Meridian.’ It was pretty magical. After that we were in the studio together every weekend; making music, drinking wine, making dinners…

Adam: We had a shared appreciation for each other’s work but there was no intention to start a band at all. We met up for coffee one afternoon, which led to opening some wine, which led to turning on some instruments to jam. Something clicked and all of a sudden we had all of the parts to a really great track within about 25 minutes. We all loved what we had started so we made plans to meet again to finish it. That led to starting something else that we felt needed to be finished.

Patrick: The first time Tess came over to the old studio, we were more concerned with what snacks to get than what the jam might sound like. After that 25 minutes, the immediate musical chemistry completely took us by surprise.

What do you get out of working as a group that you can’t with your own main projects?

Adam: Tess is the lead singer and typically writes all the lyrics in this group so that’s one of the major differences which I find really inspiring.

Patrick: Working together makes us travel to musical places that we’d never really be able to go to on our own. There’s this beautiful, kindred, democratic meeting point with our work. Where we land is definitely inspiring.

Tess: Studio energy! The excitement in the studio when we’re chasing an idea together is unmatched.

‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ is released on the SSURROUNDSS label, how does this compare with being on other labels?

Tess: I guess we’ll see! It’s cool to be doing our own thing and making this space for ourselves. I started SSURROUNDSS to release my record ‘Ideas of Space’ and it felt like the right move to release the DAWN TO DAWN record too.

Patrick: What better captain to steer the ship than our beloved front woman. SSURROUNDSS 4 lyfe.

Would it be fair to describe ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ as a product of lockdown, the result of a need to collaborate due to the isolation?

Tess: Most of this album was written in 2019, so before the pandemic. The only songs we wrote in the lockdown were ‘Stereo’ and ‘Samba’ in December 2020. We all took covid tests and went into the studio for two days and made these two really beautiful, happy songs. I was writing about missing summer, missing partying, missing togetherness. After those sessions we had a small party at my house, which was illegal at the time, so we boarded up all the windows so no one would know we were there. Crazy to think about.

What synthesizers and drum machines did you dust off for the album’s making, do you have any favourite trusty pieces of equipment?

Adam: I have a Lexicon PCM 70 effects processor that was used quite a bit throughout the record. The Voyetra 8 sound also made its way into a couple of tracks and there are some nice ARP Odyssey moments as well.

Patrick: My SH101 also finds itself on almost all of our songs. Same with the 808 with everything going through an old Mackie 1402 mixer. That thing was pretty key actually. When unknowingly writing ‘Postcards…’, the three of us were always at a keyboard and drum machine, Tess on the mic. That liveness of the jams definitely finds its way into our songs.

Tess: The Juno 60 is on a lot of tracks too – that was fun to write with as I usually write on my 106. Such a special sound, you can really hear it on ‘A Colour Named By You.’

‘Meridian’ is an example of the more uptempo approach of DAWN TO DAWN, was there a conscious aim to be more “upbeat” with a particular aesthetic in mind? Did the vocal approach change at all as a result?

Tess: I think there’s always an energy that we’re looking to capture. The more upbeat songs were all made at night, after dinners and many bottles of wine in the dead of winter.

In terms of creative dynamic, do you each have designated roles within DAWN TO DAWN?

Adam: Usually the three of us would jam an idea and then Patrick and I would experiment with the file – process some sounds and edit – and then we’d play Tess what we worked on and decide what worked and what didn’t – then arrange everything all together, add what we felt was missing – and finally, re-record all the vocals.

Tess: We all write together in the studio. After the initial few sessions, Adam and Patrick will take the files and experiment with processing, and then we’ll get back in the studio to finalize everything and record vocals etc.

‘Care’ is interesting and unconventional in that a sung lyric doesn’t appear until almost halfway through the track, how did the idea come about?

Adam: I think that idea came about as a result of our shared love of B-sides, while recording the song it just felt like a natural thing to do.

Tess: ‘Care’ is one of my favourite songs on the record. That was the first track we did together where I really started to push my voice to another level. I think we wanted to give some space to that, and eventually have it lead to a little story.

‘Stereo’ captures that joy of music which can be a communal or solitary experience, functional or incidental, what was the song’s genesis?

Tess: Like I said earlier, ‘Stereo’ was written deep in the winter lockdown of 2020. We were so happy to be back in the studio together after 7 months of not being there that we ended up writing these really euphoric songs. For ‘Stereo’, I was imagining a party I went to in 2019 where I went alone and was on a bit of mushrooms. There’s something really nice about being at a party alone, something carefree and weightless. That’s the vibe I was after.

Adam: These were also the first sessions at a new studio space in downtown Montreal – it was the beginning of the holiday season and the downtown lights seemed to seep into the recording.

Tess: December is one of the best months to write music, such a special vibe.

Patrick: Yeah, we all love Christmas.

‘Lanes’ is inspired by British seaside towns, but was there a particular one and what did you see that fascinated you?

Adam: When we were writing ‘Lanes’, we realized that we were channeling this mysterious mood and we started talking about ghostly British coastal towns. We became very excited by this idea, this imagery, and so it became the inspiration for the song.

Tess: When I wrote the lyrics, I had Brighton in mind, specifically the area called ‘The Lanes’ where the roads narrow and you can easily get lost. It’s such a special place. I’m half British and grew up spending summers in the UK. I’ve always loved British seaside towns, there’s a melancholy to them that you don’t find anywhere else.

Which are each of your own favourite tracks from ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’?

Tess: ‘Care’ is really special for me for the reasons I mentioned earlier. ‘A Colour Named By You’ I love – it feels timeless. And ‘Anniversary’ has this calm, blissful to it that I always seek when I’m writing. I could live in that song.

Adam: ‘Lanes’ is the most moving one for me, ‘Meridian’ is special cause it was what started the project, and I love the groove and vocal melodies on ‘Samba’.

Patrick: I love ‘Samba’, ‘Stereo’. They’re the kind of dancey pop tunes that I always love to discover. ‘Lanes’ is also so beautiful and heartbreaking and such a special one… I’m pretty sure we were all in tears somewhere throughout the writing process.

What’s the future for DAWN TO DAWN?

Tess: We’re in the studio, working on a bunch of different tracks. It will be interesting to see how they come together in the future. No specific plans for now though we’re talking about touring in the Spring. It will be amazing to finally perform these songs for people – I’ve been waiting to do that since the day we first got together in the studio.

Patrick: The song we’re currently working on has such a vibe it kinda freaks me out… but an amazing kind of freak out. Excited to continue to follow our impulses, try to make meaningful music, and just have lots of fun.

ELECTRICITYCLUB.CO.UK gives its sincerest thanks to DAWN TO DAWN

‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ is released on 6th October 2022 by SSURROUNDSS in CD and digital formats, available to pre-order from https://dawntodawn.bandcamp.com/album/postcards-from-the-sun-to-the-moon





Text and Interview by Chi Ming Lai
Photos by Christopher Honeywell
25th September 2022


DAWN TO DAWN are the Canadian danceable dreampop trio comprising of Tess Roby, Adam Ohr and Patrick Lee.

With their debut album ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ slated for October, the rather wonderful new single ‘Stereo’ celebrates the joy of music, especially in times of adversity. Driven by a Roland TR909, the song was written during the early 2020 lockdown.

Whereas previous single ‘Care’ was a touching ode to summer nights with friends, ‘Stereo’ touches on the acceptance of confinement where “I wait for no one to ask ‘when do we go?’”; but it embraces the notion that “you’re here – on the stereo” in a romantic reflection of past parties and good times. With a breezy allure captured while maintaining an understated synthesized danceability, ‘Stereo’ is marvellously infectious with a promise of even better things to come.

Directed by Tess Roby and filmed by Hugo Bernier with DAWN TO DAWN, the grainy Kodak 16mm visual accompaniment features hazy lava lamps, a 12 inch single of ‘Personal Jesus’ and summer scenes of DJ-ing, dancing and chilling to highlight how music is central to both friendship and life.

When the trio met, there had been no intention of forming a band, but as friendship blossomed, a musical affinity emerged. Constructed via jam sessions in Montreal and with 808s, 909s, Minimoogs, System 100s, Juno 60s, MS20s and Solinas invited to along for the ride, the self-produced ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ will also include DAWN TO DAWN’s previous singles ‘Meridian’, ‘A Colour Named By You’ and ‘Care’.

To be released on Tess Roby’s recently established SSURROUNDSS label, her aim is to provide a platform for independently-minded Canadian electronic music with a focus on female-identifying artists. With its sparse folktronica backdrop, her second solo album ‘Ideas Of Space’ was its first product.

‘Stereo’ is available now via https://orcd.co/stereo

The forthcoming DAWN TO DAWN album ‘Postcards From The Sun To The Moon’ is released on 6th October 2022 by SSURROUNDSS, pre-order from https://dawntodawn.bandcamp.com/






Text by Chi Ming Lai
Photo by Christopher Honeywell
26th July 2022

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