Amaris Wenceslas is already known in the EDM world for her work with Geiko, an all-female instrumental music project which seeks to take gender out of music production in the electronic world. Geiko’s second album released in 2017 and is called The Hollow (see below for a sample and Soundcloud links), but because this project seeks to keep relative anonymity for the artists involved, Amaris also produced her solo album called Neon Colors. Released in late November, the Dutch producer has also diversified in terms of style, not to mention adding vocals to the mix.
While Geiko is quite heavily and unapologetically electro-infused techno, Amaris’s solo album is more synthwave with indie pop when it comes to vocals. By that description alone, listeners can probably glean that Neon Colors is much softer around the edges than The Hollow, but it is definitely still well within the wheelhouse of EDM. That said, it’s all extremely different and not what most EDM fans would expect. Amaris’s vocals are low and raspy with a hint of blues, and while the synths are done mostly in an 80s synthwave style, the beat in many of the songs is of a quick-paced pop persuasion.
Some songs on the album stand out as more definitively EDM, such as the title track, which is a sort of sparse dubstep beat. Others, like “Unsigned” or “Fever” have that danceable pop beat which could be mixed with EDM because of the synths but might not be recognized as such right away on the dancefloor. A highlight of the album is “Critical Orbit,” where this crossover between electro pop and EDM really works. It will remind listeners of Bjork with its somewhat ambient, artistic and experimental synths and the halting, syncopated vocal style Amaris uses in the track. The beat is once again dubstep at base but goes well with the other elements so this is how the marriage of pop and EDM is thus seamlessly achieved.
EDM heads may be inclined to go straight for Amaris’s more obviously ravey Geiko album The Hollow which is a great album in its own right but Neon Colors is definitely worth a listen. It’s definitely a bit more experimental and out there on the electronic music spectrum, but it shows Amaris’s diversity and ability to come up with something original for her EDM fanbase.
Both Neon Colors and The Hollow are out now and can be found on iTunes by clicking the respective album names. Neon Colors can also be streamed on Spotify or ReverbNation, while The Hollow by Geiko is on Soundcloud.