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 featured song, selected by Morning Show host John Richards, is “Sterile” by youryoungbody from the 2013 self-released EP Kurokabi.
Known for eerie electronic music, Seattle duo youryoungbody has recently released their debut album, Kurokabi, which, like their two previous EP’s, USER and Mask, is forceful in its musical subtlety and ubiquity. Even before listening, people can get a strong sense of personality from vocalist Emily Cripe and producer Killian Brom just by glancing at the photos from their Facebook page: youthful in physicality and brooding in spirit. Their tumblr page characterizes their sound as “Dark Electronic Baby Voices That Keep You Up At Night,” and one is inclined to believe them. Their music, groovy and funky, is reminiscent of DJ Shadow mixed with local producer Sax G.
Today’s featured podcast, “Sterile,” begins so beautifully -- it’s as if the song wants to be silent, knows it can’t, and then progresses onward. With light keys and a sort of digital background ambiance, the full melody commences, just as Emily Cripe’s vocals, accompanied by a sonic crash, alert us that we are here, within the song. Amid the spare rhythm section, Cripe lyrics are almost inaudible yet almost everywhere. The song pumps us forward, we cannot stop it. “You’re not the god I used to be,” is what I hear her crying out. There is so much drama packed within the four minutes and sixteen seconds of “Sterile,” it’s as if the listener is peaking, reaching the top of a sonic mountain one has always wanted to summit. “Who wants me? Who needs me? Who wants me? Who’s crying? Who wants me!?” The song turns to an almost club-thumping, body-spinning opus at its conclusion, as if it’s become a ballerina dressed in all black, turning, turning to a beat that engineer Killian Brom is filling the space with: the dance of confusion, the dance of dark certainty.
youryoungbody’s most recent show was at art gallery Vermillion as part of the venue’s new Tag series. The duo will play next on July 27 at the Capitol Hill Block Party on The Vera Project stage at 2pm. Late last month, they stopped by for a live session at KEXP -- you can see photos from their performance here and listen to the it on our archive here. Look for videos of the session in the near future.
more photos by Bebe Besch: