By Charlie Maybee
Synth pop goddess and enigmatic art-rocker, Arya Zappa, is ready to dance with psychoanalytic prose in her new album, A Study of Dreaming Habits. With a healthy dose of glossy melodies, fizzing electronic beats, and ethereal ambience, this is an album that will have you grooving with self-reflection whether you realize it or not.
Taking a page from 70’s and 80’s new wave and post-punk acts like Echo and the Bunnymen, The Cure, and Pet Shop Boys, Zappa manages an exquisite balance between thoughtful and playful as they gracefully bounce from track to track with a wandering nonchalance. As the synthesizers swell, there’s a grandiose sense of scale that feels nearly infinite in its expanse. It seeps and vibrates through you like a gentle electric current – pulling the listener between states of wanting to move to the beat while having a deep listening experience.
“I feel like I’m floating and walking on air” she sings in the first verse of “One Afternoon” encapsulating the feel that this album inspires naturally, “I feel like I’m burning the clouds away”. The ephemeral and fluid nature of clouds gives a lovely metaphor for how this album works and sounds. A constantly shape-shifting work of art that suspends you in a synthesized cosmos. The floating is, at times, so natural that you may forget there are even clouds of music holding you up, so don’t look down. Zappa wants to whisk you off into a cosmic journey, and it’s best to surrender to its natural allure.
A Study of Dreaming Habits is available now on major streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music. Find this and more great music on the Alchemical Records Multigenere Mixture playlist on Spotify.
Charlie Maybee is a dancer, musician, educator, and writer based in Charleston, South Carolina who currently teaches with the Dance Program at the College of Charleston. His primary work as an artist is with his performing collective, Polymath Performance Project, through which he makes interdisciplinary performance art that centers tap dance as the primary medium of expression and research. He also currently plays rhythm guitar for the Charleston-based punk band, Anergy, and releases music as a solo artist under the name Nox Eterna.
Queer duo Witch Weather discuss new album and the influence of the DMV on their sound.
Philadelphia-based queer punks Witch Weather have a message for anyone who feels hopeless and worthless: you are not alone. With an irresistible sound that draws from 80’s goth and lo-fi grunge, the indie duo wears their heart on their sleeve, giving voice to complex emotions that many would opt to suppress in the recesses of their minds.
Join Alchemical Records as they connect with Witch Weather to discuss the band’s new self-titled album, their search for a sense of belonging as members of the queer community, the important element that keeps the duo’s creative bond strong, and the influence of the DMV on their sound.