Feb 03, 2023
By Caleb Campbell
Photography by John Blivens
North Carolina-based outfit Cor de Lux debuted in 2020 with Dream Life, a record that married expressive post punk with dark shades of dream pop and shoegaze. That layered combination of sounds also serves as the foundation for the band’s sophomore album, MEDIA, due out next week on February 10th. The record was largely written over quarantine and fittingly finds the band reflecting on isolation, uncertainty, and division, exploring the uneasy tension of the era amidst angular guitars and densely layered melodies.
The band has teased the album with their 2022 single, “Syncopated,” followed by last month’s effort, “Rumors,” and today they’re back with a final single from the album, “Whose Side,” premiering with Under the Radar.
“Whose Side” centers on wiry guitar lines and elliptical lyrics, conjuring a swirling whirlpool of dark melodies and moody instrumentation. With each repetition, the band steadily ratchets up the tension, adding in thick shoegaze guitars and dramatic spoken-word passages. The band’s vocalists trade paranoid musings until lead singer Dawn Moraga questions, “Who’s crying? / Who’s lying? / Who’s dying? / Cause I can’t see.” The track builds on the tense and disquieting side of the band, offering a portrait of the confusion and paranoia endemic to today’s daily life.
The band explains of the track, “This song and most of the album were written during the uneasy times of Quarantine and feeling like the whole world was against each other. These lyrics were my desperation of watching humans tear each other down from all sides. The ‘Burning gas and trying to sleep they paint the walls but the cracks still leak’ lyric is about politicians doing their little good deeds for votes and a small fix to poverty to what could be done. Without an informed electorate, politicians will continue to use the bottom billion merely for photo opportunities, rather than promoting real transformation. I believe education and digging more into healing communities through the young and education of scholastic, mental health, diet and wellness, economics and family resources is key instead of just painting the cracks on some subsidized homes in the low-income areas. Much more can be done.”
Check out the song and video, animated by Arturo Baston, below. MEDIA is due out on February 10th.