Triumph over trial.If you have any familiarity with the indie quintet Twin Sister, it might very well be with the song “Meet the Frownies.” With its dancey backbeat and dreamy melody, Twin Sister had established itself as a strong new contender in the realm of indiepop. That was three years ago.
After all but disappearing, Twin Sister has returned with the release of Mr Twin Sister. That three years has not passed easily for the quintet however. Pulling through a multiple sclerosis diagnosis, a drop from their label, and a tour car accident, the quintet has simply outgrown its glowy dancepop. Now going by Mr Twin Sister, the group has totally reinvented their sound to a slick, shadowy nighttime-in-the-city electronic act. If Twin Sister was about “smoking weed with you” in the afternoon, Mr Twin Sister sounds like vodka shots on empty lamp-lit streets, lonely drives at night, and staring at the city out your loft window. This makes for an intensely emotional album from start to finish, as the group wafts, drives, runs, and wanders from track to track.
“Sensitive” starts with little more than a glossy flicker, but blossoms into a beautiful decadence of the night. “Rude Boy” finds the group with a funky bassline driven by what almost feels like resent. “In The House of Yes” lands close to a DFA records sound, with its driving, modernized disco lying below the hollow joy dreaminess. “Blush” is indescribable as anything but woozy, a love-laden call out for help heavily blurred by the sounds of Oxycodone. The saxophone wafts in and one can’t help but feel the loneliness that night brings. In sharp contrast is “Out of the Dark,” with its heady IDM blurps and beats as the inhumanized vocals sing of the different pulls of gender identity. The energy fades out and “Twelve Angels” finds Mr Twin Sister at their starkest and demented. The romantic depression is washed away here and replaced by a sort of grimness. Mr closes up with “Crime Scene,” a Mojave 3 or Mazzy Star indebted love lament that fantastically brings the album to a cathartic close.
The music found here is a great improvement upon the already stellar musicianship within Twin Sister. The production is slick as hell and perfectly captures every essence of the greasy, lonely nights being sung about. With the lyrics to match, Mr Twin Sister is an incredible album. Those three years of hardship have not gone to waste, as Mr Twin Sister has emerged a far superior band. Mr Twin Sister is a true contender for album of the year–quite the triumph over such trial.
Recommended if you like: Blade Runner OST, electro R&B i.e.Chet Faker, Aphex Twin
Recommended Tracks: “Out of the Dark,” “Sensitive,” “Blush,” and “Rude Boy”