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“Pandora” by the Sensuous Sonarpilot

In his latest official single and music video, titled “Pandora,” the sensuous Sonarpilot revs the engine on big beats and proves that he can use even the coldest of synthesized assistance to sound like a true boss inside of the studio. Recorded with more of a scooped equalization on the vocal than some of his contemporaries have utilized in their own work recently, “Pandora” is a rather experimental juggernaut of physicality that, on paper, would seemingly be too structured atop contradictions to withstand a singer of even the brightest skill; that said, this instrumental track crushes with a focus that truly caught me off guard.  

Right from the moment they first come sliding into focus forward, there’s no debating whether or not the grooves here are as enormous as they come, but that doesn’t stop our star from straddling them like a legit pro. His precision with the verse is something to marvel at, and considering this is but a humble, solo single, you have to wonder just how good he’s going to be after he gets more collaborations under his belt. An extended play doesn’t seem out of the question after taking a peek at the video and studying the foundations of its best moments, and I’m sure others are going to agree with me. 

The arrangement of the instruments has a soft tone that immediately sends chills down my back whenever I listen to “Pandora,” and as much as I want to credit the depth of the percussive thrust with making me want to synchronize my own hips to the beat here, the cadence of the melodic execution likely deserves just as many props. The fluidity of the harmonies reminds me a bit of techno’s earliest stuff but without the overt noise context with regards to the rhythm, and if he has this same kind of presence in a live setting, this artist is going to kill it on the festival circuit.  

“Pandora” sports a psychedelic music video that is lush and alluring, lining up with the style of the music perfectly while also advancing a bit of eroticism only slightly implied by the balance of the instrumentation in the single. There’s nothing bad about getting blunt with the aesthetics when it results in something as cohesive and evocative as this single and its accompanying video are, and in that regard, Sonarpilot couldn’t have hit much more of a home run with this release than he did.  

I’ve only just started listening to him this year, but I’m already feeling pretty confident that I’ve found a real gem in Sonarpilot almost certain to blossom even more than he already has in his first couple of studio cuts. I’m looking forward to seeing where he’s going to go from here, and although the international underground is rife with a lot of talented players essentially looking to accomplish many of the same goals he has, “Pandora” tells me he’s got a level of charisma than nine out of every ten cats who show up in Hollywood simply never acquire for themselves.  

Mindy McCall



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