Future Girlfriend
Pink Dance EP






From the tropical territory of Asunción, Paraguay hails a producer whose oneiric moniker might give you a wrong clue about the verve and biomorphic drive that is mirrored in the music itself, but rest assured that Future Girlfriend – named after that Mike Blount meme – knows what needs to be done in order to lure the listener into the suprafauna of megacities, emerald jungles and, of course, pink peritoneums of the neotenic kind. Enter the Pink Dance EP and its four glossy cornerstones which are more salubrious and real than the sophisticated fakery of the attached genres might let you believe. Released on Business Casual, available at their Bandcamp page and situated between the interstices of Future Funk and Vaporwave, Future Girlfriend is more keen on a straight beat than eclectic-electrocuted IDM cavalcades, but this beat and its dance-compatible appearance doesn’t translate into a soulless cut that is only created to cash in. Instead, the producer boosts unexpected emotions and resides in midtempo ranges which allow the textures and reverberations of the synths to form soothing veils and orographic protrusions. Even the Ambient genre is at times close at hand, and a certain yearning is allowed to unfold as well, that kind of pondering contemplation that is so key to the Vaporwave genre, but often ostracized in Future Funk. Here we receive the best of both scintillating worlds, and that justifies a meticulous look at all four tracks. Prepare for a Mike Blount encounter, but most importantly: think pink!


Cautiously dissonant car horn organ shards, bubbling breakbeat blebs, the short punctilio of susurrant saxes and aqueous guitars which ultimately lead to clavichord chromodynamics: welcome to Pink Danceピ ンクのダンス, an auspicious estuary into the magenta magnetotail of Future Girlfriend’s eponymous EP. The opener is obviously euphoric, but thankfully doesn’t over-egg the pudding. While it is a Future Funk fusillade alright, the various parts – whether they are of the legato or particle kind – serrate like clockwork, similar to the late 90’s works of one Fatboy Slim. An odd example, I have to admit, but one which is used in order to delineate the gradual aggrandizement of textures and layers; it does splendidly unfold in Future Girlfriend’s mauve-colored suntrap as well. Purified crystalline gluons and warmer saffron-covered slapped strings would be antagonistic forces otherwise, but here in the opener, they work well in tandem. The adjacent Small City is similarly enchanting, but much more euphonious from the get-go: vitreous verglas synths of the utmost glistening nature conflate with ligneous beat bumpers. The afterglow and glissando of the synths is oneiric enough, but the hazy female vox augment it so sumptuously that I hail this dreamy diorama the standout track of the EP. With the added warped sax of the scenery in mind, there’s an enthralling neon night before you.


The third track Hi High offers one of the cutest or most disturbing anacruses of the Future Funk scene, depending on one’s viewpoint (sped-up parts of it are also included in the preceding Small City). Its cuteness level is not unlike the infamous Macaulay Culkin shaving scene in the first Home Alone installment, but of course we have to deal with a snippet of the aforementioned Mike Blount and his love-stoned hopes and dreams. The aesthetic of that particular inclusion – and the echoing sentiment throughout the track – notwithstanding, Hi High is mercilessly aglow with sizzling clavichord helixes and stupefyingly stacked vanilla synths whose silky viscidity enshrine and emit starlight, sunshine and planetesimal aurorae all at once. The saxophone adds superficial fissures to the velveteen perianth, but is outshone by the orthochromatic lucency of the aforementioned key pads. A lachrymose lilt, surprisingly laid-back despite its upper midtempo physiognomy. The finale comes in the shape of Crazy Nights 狂気夜, featured previously here at AmbientExotica in the second Vapor Vertebrae installment of May 2015, back then serving as a precursor of the things to come, now even written with a capital C. Without recapitulating the whole write-up, its basic constituents still ring true, and now that the whole EP is available, they hint at the endemic lure: gemstone-plastered streets, Italo House pianos and calcined electric guitars amalgamate into a stratiform duology, providing both a safe environment and a retrosternal redshift at the end of the day and start of the night.


Future Girlfriend’s Pink Dance EP shows the mysterious producer’s skills in terms of melodies, textures and the counterpoise in regard to their incandescence and perceived surface, the latter of which is hardest to achieve in audio productions where the successful song triggers all the right synapses and touches the listener. Said listener, however, can never touch the song. With the high-plasticity locales of Future Girlfriend, however, hapticity is theoretically possible. Especially the epicenter of the EP is a sight to behold: Small City provides the tetragonal yet organic flow of a bustling metropolis without the pesky methylbenzene, and Hi High is a similarly transfigured-gregarious chloroderivative of rotatory amicability. Future Funk shows the tendency of revving things up too  much, of exaggerating the tunnel vision, letting the listener hyperventilate and succumb to tachycardia. While these instances are perfectly legit and less inimical than one might think, a balanced viewpoint with a dreamier nucleus is much appreciated as well. This is exactly what Future Girlfriend achieves with the Pink Dance EP, fanning out the day and the night, amplifying the spherification and yet staying true to the four-to-the-floor architecture and incandescent complexion the genre conventions somewhat demand. The whole EP is a wondrous artifact, and Future Girlfriend a force to reckon with both in Vaporwave ventures and Future Funk fields.


Further listening and reading:


Vaporwave Review 085: Future Girlfriend – Pink Dance EP (2015). Originally published on May 31, 2015 at AmbientExotica.com.