Wednesday, March 25, 2009

And I'm in the quicksand

Quicksand ~ La Roux

Already a sensation in the UK, La Roux, who were voted by the BBC as #5 in the "Sounds of 2009", combine 80's synth sounds with the post-modern electroclash edge that has become a citylife sensation in dj'ed dance clubs, and indie music mixes, everywhere. The name La Roux, French for "a red-haired one", was selected from a baby book of names by red-haired singer/writer Ely Jackson. She is the daughter of Trudie Goodwin, star of the British procedural drama, The Bill. Co-producer and co-writer, Ben Langmind, help to create La Roux's razor sharp lyrics and electro-magnetic up-tempo beats, creating a perfect-fit partnership.

Yazoo, Erasure and The Communards come to mind when listening to La Roux, as does the inevitable Depeche Mode comparison that most of the post-80's electro bands/artists that have come around in the last few years get affixed on their "sounds like" t-shirts. Jackson herself recalls being raised on Nick Drake and Neil Young records, and that her first songwriting experiences came in the form of a girl singing heartbreaking poetry, and strumming on an acoustic guitar. Her now musical partner encouraged her to trade the guitar in for a Korg keyboard, but to keep her poetic, somewhat melancholic songs in tow.

The meeting-up of electro-keyboard pressing, which cannot help but harken those 80's pop predecessors, with Jackson's disarming, high-pitched crooning, and her emotionally-wrought lyrics (she's been cited as crying between lyrical refrains, on-stage) is hard to ignore. I look forward to catching La Roux live during their mini-U.S. tour this April. It has been ages since I've been to the Roxy, but I think this is a good enough reason to make a return.

North America mini-tour dates:

April 3rd, Brooklyn, NY @ Studio B
April 4th, Montreal, QE @ Les Saints
April 5th, Toronto, ONT @ The Drake
April 9th, San Francisco, CA @ 330 Ritch (Popscene)
April 12th, Los Angeles, CA @ Roxy (Dimmak party)

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