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LISTEN: PATHS – ‘Neoprene’

‘Neoprene’, the debut single from PATHS is nothing if not incredibly intriguing – so intriguing in fact that it took a long while trying to decide in my mind whether or not I was actually into it. I ended up going back and forth constantly, before it was no longer my own decision – the glittering, sharp synth sparkles that provide the fabric of the track swept me along with them, and I was powerless to resist its charms.

The repeated refrain of “one of these days we’ll meet in the middle” strikes as grasping for that necessary compromise in any form of relationship, but finding it just out of reach; a frustrating block to mutual fulfilment. Another train of thought though led me towards imagining some kind of TRON-esque journey, with two characters speeding around a flashing cyber world doomed to collide – but that’s probably just an overly literal reading stemming from the influence of the chaotic electronic soundscapes.

Taking cues from contemporary acts like Jamie XX or St. Vincent, there are nonetheless nods (in my mind, anyway) to 80’s classics, in the coarse, raw nature of the synths in use – this combined with the breakneck pace throughout means that Nena’s ’99 Red Balloons’ springs into my mind, but that might say more about me than the song…

Consistently building throughout, before a brief period of calm ushers in the stormy climax, ‘Neoprene’ is well worth a few listens, a quite mad sound is generated here, which certainly helps it stand out from the typical new acts you’re likely to hear.

PATHS’ debut single ‘Neoprene’ is out now.

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