In his highly-anticipated new single, “Stepping into Eternity,” indie electronica performer Sp8ce Owl wears his heart on his sleeve in an arrangement-driven masterpiece of intergalactic melodies and slowed urban grooves, the likes of which had been previously missing from airwaves this year.
Summer brings with it an ocean of electronic tracks that, admittedly, are tough for casual fans to pick through, but curious parties really should take note of what this young man is doing in the studio at the moment. “Stepping into Eternity” isn’t a world-altering watershed single, but I think that if it’s given the right platform to shine, it could be a game-changer for the American electronica underground, to put it quite mildly.
From the moment that it makes its first appearance here, the bassline is very moody and unpredictable. Its instability is countered with a rigidly-arranged drumbeat, which yields an intriguing contrast between the two that is reminiscent of 80’s-style dream pop. The bass doesn’t rebel against the rhythm in the synth track, but it does plenty to carve out its own unique place in the mix, and when everything is said and done, I think that it gives the song some extra zest in the more stock moments that it features.
The foundational synth is super-textured, even more so than what I would anticipate out of an artist in this genre, and it adds to the narrative in the mood of the music in a way that no other component could have or does. The emotion in Sp8ce Owl’s performance, the sheer urgency that carries him from one beat to the next; it’s a constant presence in “Stepping into Eternity,” reminding us that we’re listening to a flesh and blood man, and not to some form of artificial intelligence that was programmed to croon alongside a fun-loving pop beat, as I’ve come across a little too frequently in the last few years of writing about music professionally.
I would love to hear Sp8ce Owl experiment more with heavier bass tones in the future, as I think that it’s overwhelmingly clear in “Stepping into Eternity” that he has the right palate to do so. You have to have a pretty in-depth range as an arranger to go toe to toe with a bass-oriented electronica song, but that’s essentially what he teases us with here. The bassline doesn’t blast us in the face the way that, say, a more abrasive synthwave-style track would, but what I’m saying is that even if it were a little more visceral, Sp8ce Owl’s premise would still be stealing the lion’s share of our affections in this single. The underground, collectively, is turning out some real stars right now, and you can bet your bottom dollar that Sp8ce Owl is among the cream of the crop.
He’s wielding some big weaponry in “Stepping into Eternity,” and when I consider the fact that this is only his latest buzz-earning release, I’m all the more excited to see what he can do with some additional time to cultivate this sound and exploit his rich tonality for every drop of melodic wonderment that it’s worth. This guy’s skillset is impressive, and through this release, his brand’s value has nowhere to go but up.
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