Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s selection, featured on the Afternon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Her Fantasy” by Matthew Dear from the 2012 album Beams on Ghostly International.
A cross between a DJ, bandleader, pop musician, and experimental artists, Matthew Dear has been producing continuously evolving electronic music for close to a decade. Originally starting his career in Michigan, his debut album Leave Luck to Heaven was one of Ghostly International’s (the label founded by Dear and Sam Valenti IV) first releases to garner national attention, and after public kudos from Richie Hawtin and Hot Chip (who he later opened for in 2007), Dear began to break out on his own. Now touring behind his fifth album Beams, Dear looks to merge his avant-garde tendencies with his desire to fill dancefloors across the world. The lead single from Beams, the tumbling and exotic “Her Fantasy” is a trippy ride through Matthew Dear’s electronically constructed jungle. Built on a pulsating beat and filled with a number of chiming samples, the song stacks on loop after loop until Dear enters with his heavily processed baritone. As bouncy keyboards and cooing vocal samples move the song’s melody to the next section, Dear proposes a question: “Am I the chrome man, am I not of great design?/Do I feel love like all of the others or this feeling only mine?” The pseudo-philosophical lyrics meld with the organic-yet-mechanical instrumentation, and as the song builds to a synth soaked climax, Dear finds his answer: “It’s just one in a millon hearts, that feels the way that I do”. Although the divide between Dear’s human desires and electronic output still stands, both elements combine to make “Her Fantasy” a compelling argument for the emotional depth of electronic music.
Matthew Dear will be performing in Seattle twice on September 29th, once during his own show and also as part of the Ghostly showcase. Get more info on those shows over at the Decibel Festival website and keep track of Matthew Dear over at his website. In the meantime, watch the video for “Her Fantasy” below.