Pays : United States Label : Mutually Detrimental Genres et styles : Indie Pop / Lo-Fi Année : 2023

Tennis – Pollen

· par Lyle Hendriks

The world was a very different place on Valentine’s Day 2020, the release date of Tennis’ last album, Swimmer. The iconic mid-fi indie duo has been around for some time, slowly but surely developing their meticulous style and distinctive electro-analog sound over a decade of music. But after a three-year break to live through a noteworthy historical event, the duo has returned with an evolved aesthetic, one that seems to have changed alongside us.

Fans may know that Tennis does the bulk of their songwriting on their sailboat. As whimsical as it may sound, the seafarers seem to invoke the ocean’s undulations on this record like never before. Vast synth chords swell across the track like a tide lapping at the shore, with restrained yet essential instrumentation around the song’s pulsing centre. This is especially noticeable on “Let’s Make a Mistake Tonight,” where Alaina Moore’s impassioned, ’80s-anthem-style vocals punctuate sexy, brooding basslines and irresistible disco riffs courtesy of Tennis’ other half, Patrick Riley. 

With that said, there are moments of Pollen that surprise in their direction, including several tracks that all but do away with Tennis’ signature synths in favour of bright piano, fingered bass, acoustic guitar, and even the odd bongo drum. These are welcome departures that mesh surprisingly well with the more pop-centric numbers on Pollen—particularly “Pollen Song” with Moore’s Stevie Nicks-inspired vocals. 

At 35 minutes, Pollen is a clear sign of Tennis’ ability to edit, refine, and distill everything that sets them apart—delivering an album with no trim and all energy. Each song transports us to another side of their distinctive, wistful melancholy, whether you’re head banging in the club or crying in the tub. 

Inscrivez-vous à l'infolettre