Yes, it’s quite a strange name for Brazilian dream pop duo That Gum U Like, but the fun, shoegazey mix of rock and chill EDM they put together in their 2017 EP The Black Lodge is strange in a whole different way. Dream pop or shoegaze is an OK term for That Gum U Like’s music but with their new single “Biography,” they’ve invented a whole new term, and it seems appropriate: nugaze.
That Gum U Like count the Cocteau Twins, My Bloody Valentine and Flume among their chief influences, so it stands to reason that their sound will run the gamut of shoegaze from rock-influenced all the way to ambient or chill EDM. Their “nugaze” track “Biography” is definitely in the latter camp. It opens with a pronounced trap beat, something that already sets this duo, consisting of a vocalist named Andressa D and a producer who calls himself Popinigis, apart from most electronic shoegaze. From there, the vocal enters and changes up the vibe a bit. Andressa D’s vox on this track sound a bit like if someone gave Alexis Krauss from Sleigh Bells an edible. Bell-clear and angelic, they set the tone for the rest of the track is minimal.
After the vocals take over and start to guide the track, the beat switches to something a bit more rock-driven, albeit Cocteau Twins rock, but it switches again for the chorus, somewhat combining the trap and rock beats. The other thing that makes this track a bit more EDM is that the synths and guitar are ornaments more than anything, there to embellish Andressa D’s extraordinary vocals and help announce the beat switches.
The composition structure of “Biography” also dances on the line between conventional pop or rock and EDM. The vocals are done as a verse-chorus-verse structure like a pop or rock song, but it has multiple builds and drops like an EDM track, eventually evolving into a crescendo of all the sounds used in the track. Also a very EDM thing to do.
This “nugaze” hashtag could likely be a great way to delineate acts like That Gum U Like who ride that line between rock and EDM. “Biography,” while largely structurally rock, has enough elements both compositional and vibe-wise that is could easily be used in a club setting or as a stunning break track at a festival. That Gum U Like are thus definitely worth keeping an eye on from the EDM world as they release more tracks.
“Biography” is not available for purchase yet as it was just made public on Soundcloud today, but check out their Bandcamp page as it will be posted there shortly. Their debut The Black Lodge EP is also on Bandcamp and Soundcloud and is definitely worth a listen.