By Spike Brendle
One day I might get off the dreamy female vocals/synth-pop train…but that day is not today. Take HAIM and St. Lucia, add a dash of late 80’s and let it chill, and you will have yourself the “dark-pop” trio, MUNA. Based in Los Angeles, MUNA is Katie Gavin (lead vocals and production), Josette Maskin (lead guitar), and Naomi McPherson (rhythm guitar and production). The trio have been releasing songs on Soundcloud sporadically for the past year, along with playing just a handful of live shows (equally as spread out). Their latest single, “Promise,” was released this week, and it shimmers with synth pop euphoria.
A powerful kick drum and snare hit start the song off, into a quick verse backed by synths of organized chaos. Once the pre-chorus hits it all makes sense, and we are immersed into a beautifully arranged melodic waterfall of emotion, leaving us satisfied immediately. While the lyrics tell us the heartbreaking story of the self-destructive, confused lover ("Why do I do it // You wanna hold my hand // I make a fist // A false promise”), the song still keeps its sweet serenity as we progress through. The vocal delivery on the breakdown comes off as a Lady Gaga-esque anthem, followed by a repeating chorus and a killer guitar riff delivering us to a sweet confession from Gavin “I told a lot of lies // I called it a compromise // to keep you…”
This song is filled with the feels: the good feels, the sad feels, the confused feels, with these lyrics: “And so I look at you now // Bruised and broken down // By what you thought was love // You tell me you want to stay // And you want to watch me change // But I'm scared so I tell you to fuck off” All of us have experienced every part of this at one point in our lives, and to be able to feel all of it in the same song gives this song the emotional attachment rather than just the catchy chorus or the shimmery synth. Don’t try to take it out to dinner though; you are headed into a tornado of mixed emotions and broken hearts.