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“Saturday Fun” from Whoaa

The first element we notice in the new single “Saturday Fun” from Whoaa is the neon groove beneath the synthetic melodies in the track. While there’s something to be said about the vocal attack in this mix, there’s no escaping the presence of the percussion, as it slinks around the verses like a venomous snake hungry for a fresh kill. Whether you’ve heard Whoaa before or are just getting turned onto their music for the first time this season, the moxie they provide to listeners in this track is worthy of a second and third spin – which isn’t true for a lot of pop music out right now.

In Whoaa’s video for “Saturday Fun,” we’re treated to a visual encapsulation of the source material that feels as eccentric as it is spellbinding. Although there’s something to be said about the overindulgence in camp we’ve been collectively seeing in the mainstream for a while now, the excess feels so much more exciting in this setting than it has when other artists have utilized it. These players know something about making a groove even sexier, and that’s evident inside the first sixty seconds of this four-and-a-half-minute track.

The melodies comprising the foundation of this single are lo-fi by design, and they immediately bring to mind some of the synthwave, chillwave, and vaporwave of the 2010s that was sorely overlooked during the peak of its indie influence. The way Whoaa is working the instrumentation into this mix shows off how much they care about the little intricacies in their sound, and if they’re able to keep the pace they’ve set for themselves with “Saturday Fun,” I can see their creative reach growing exponentially in the next few years, if not sooner.

I’m a sucker for a scooped, heavy-loading EQ as much as the next guy is, but the deliberately spiked midrange in the bassline could be single-handedly responsible for giving this beat the buoyancy it’s in possession of. So many artists would have gone in a different direction with the compositional framing of this track that Whoaa can’t help but sound a little bit rebellious, and not solely for the sake of setting themselves apart from what is becoming the most crowded talent pool pop music has seen in the better part of the last twenty years.

As invasively as it’s been produced, Whoaa’s “Saturday Fun” has a muscularity that is undeniably attractive, and I think it’s going to bring them a lot of attention from well outside of their current audience this year. There’s a lot of interest in crossover dance tracks in indie pop right now, and this song stands out as a provocative addition to the pot – but what’s more for Whoaa is that they sound like they’re still growing, which will bode well for those already excited by what they’re hearing in this performance. “Saturday Fun,” no matter what day of the week it is, feels like one of the more powerful indie listens of its kind to drop in the last few months.

Mindy McCall



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