With a name like Jockstrap, you wouldn’t expect the type of sickly-sweet vocal stylings that ooze out of their latest EP, ‘Wicked City’. In a post-Soundcloud world, we’re programmed to pigeonhole the media we consume into genre and category; but some things just defy convention. Now lining the pages of almost every prolific music mag on the shelf, London duo Georgia Ellery and Taylor Skye have found their niche…“with a ‘fuck it’ attitude”.
‘Wicked City’ slices the line between experimental cluster-fuck and hyperactive pop, a five-track project which details love and loss with perfectly executed production to match. The pair, who are still yet to graduate from university, accomplish a plethora of highly intelligent production warbling into the realms of art-school-pop - minus the feelings of wide-eyed naivety.
“You’re provoking me Robert”, Ellery starts on the opening track, “I want to be your playmate”. As the song descends into Death Grips inspired chaos, Ellery’s voice guides us through the underbelly of unconventional sounds, stopping off to appreciate an array of warped synths and rhythmically unstable samples on the way.
Making waves with their debut EP ‘Love Is The Key To The City’ just two years ago, one which saw pre-breakup Ellery in all her lustful lyrical glory, the pair respond to their innocent beginnings with an insight into emotional breakdowns, inner-turmoil, and deeply conscious (although somewhat eccentric) lyrics.
‘Acid’ follows ‘Robert’ straight out of its harsh depths with a more classical take as Ellery picks up the violin for its humble return. Somehow finding equilibrium despite the combination of disparate elements, ‘Acid’ easily makes for a contender of most exciting track on the entire record.
‘Yellow In Green’ and ‘The City’ are two perfect displays of Ellery’s impressive vocal range. Often sounding like snippets from a ‘50s musical, her voice always runs soft above the cacophonous foray happening below. Both tracks play into what Ellery describes as an “expressive and limitless sound world”, mirroring their preceding EP with similar classical elements while still being utterly unpredictable at every turn.
As the narrative of ‘Wicked City’ takes a more erratic road by the ultimate track, Jockstrap don’t fall flat at the finale. ‘City Hell’ is yet another taste of the duo’s monumental blanket of skills; this time thrusting electric guitar riffs into distorted vocals, seamlessly creating structured chaos. Deflated, wet sounding synths and the manic arrangement of the track manifest in Ellery’s transparent lyrical distress.
Ellery and Skye have created an EP which far surpasses both PC Music and hyperpop. With just five tracks, the pair poke fun at contemporaries in a dissociative genre-mashing project which recounts an effortless dynamic, all without taking themselves too seriously. ‘Wicked City’ is just a tiny slice of what’s to come, leaving a super sweet taste in our mouths.
Words: Gemma Ross
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