Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of 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 song, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Envision (feat. Channy of Poliça)” by Supreme Cuts from the 2014 album Divine Ecstasy on Dovecote.
Incorporating elements of cloud rap, UK dubstep, and modern hip-hop, the hard-to-pin-down Supreme Cuts create genre-hopping electronic music that delightfully changes its direction at a breakneck pace. Formed in Chicago by producers Mike Perry and Austin Kjeultes, the group originally started as a hip-hop production team, but when the duo had difficulty matching MCs to their own musical goals, they refocused the project on their own output. The pair’s debut release, 2011’s Trouble EP, drew comparisons to post-dubstep leaders Mount Kimbie in its textural focus, as well as noting the influence of Chicago hallmarks like footwork and juke. Their most recent release, this year’s Divine Ecstasy, continues the pair’s penchant for mixing the ethereal and the ecstatic, and features more of a vocal presence than the duo’s previous work. When we last saw Supreme Cuts in Seattle, our own Gerrit Feenstra described their set as “gloriously disorienting“, and “Envision”, a six-minute odyssey led by Poliça frontwoman Channy Leaneagh is just that. Atypically for an electronic track, Leaneagh’s vocal performance isn’t used as a soaring lead, but rather a tether for Perry and Kjeultes’ textural ambitions to switch in and out, bubbling and popping underneath one another in perpetual motion. Leaneagh hasn’t used played a such a soaring house diva role in any of her main gig’s work, so it’s thrilling to watch her wrap herself around the duo’s heady, unpredictable production. “Envision” is certainly danceable, but it’s more interesting when viewed as an experimental piece featuring three musicians who are constantly trying to out do the others.
Supreme Cuts are in Austin this week for SXSW, but if they plan any more tour dates or new music, those announcements will be announced on their Facebook and Soundcloud, respectively. Below, watch the Braden Lee-directed video for “Envision”.