By Ethan Bloomfield, Staff Writer
[Missing Know; 2021]
Dance music usually has one goal in mind, and it’s in the name. But can dance music be chilled out? Not many years ago, raves and festivals were — and likely still are — eager to book artists who make rowdy, loud and abrasive dubstep. There was simply nothing else like it.
Since then, the cultural zeitgeist has moved in the favor of more ear-friendly EDM, like the radio — and Fortnite —friendly beats produced by Marshmello. Of course, every genre will have its trends, its ebbs and its flows, even genres based around getting bodies moving.
Athens artist Marcy Adams, otherwise known as beach girl, seeks to answer this question in one word: absolutely. On their new single, “I Do It Like That… You Love It?”, beach girl succeeds in making a lively, fresh and infectious dance tune worthy of any neon-soaked venue.
Though dance music isn’t about the lyrics, beach girl’s vocals are tastefully slathered in effects and are either chopped or looped to get the groove locked in. The melody is inviting, and the layers working behind the vocals complement them rather than create a distraction, as the rise and fall of the main vocal line feels like a tense uplift continuously followed by a satisfying conclusion. The instrumental, full of simple loops, fun beat work and a simply glowing synth that seems to fill out the music perfectly is energetic without coming off as aggressive or terribly urgent. “I Do It Like That… You Love It?” exudes the confidence needed to make a dance track worthy of a toe-tap or a head nod, ending abruptly and not overstaying its welcome.
The B-side to this single, “SADNALONE”, tells a bit of a different story. More lyrics, more bass, more volume, more everything — this track is expected to be a banger. The first verse swells and swells with a hypnotic vocal snippet about partying and finding a girl to “take her far” and then … nothing?
The expected beat drop gives way to a sort of quiet sub bass with some keyboard samples and plinking percussion. It does not feel like any dance song formula I am used to. Then, a lone, buzzing acoustic guitar backing the same robotic vocals hints something is about to happen that will make it all come together.
The once-tame drop turns booming after a fake-out ends with a distorted and rattling sheet of noise that’s layered under the same catchy melody. It cuts out at all the right points to highlight both the melody and the vocals that kick in for one last run. “SADNALONE” subverts expectation, deviating from typical dance formulas while still delivering on all the promised energy and release in its relatively lengthy runtime, and it’s a lot of fun to boot.
With these two tracks, Adams provides a set of songs that do right by their genre while still doing something fresh that demands more than a glance. It is a delightful look at both the local music scene in Athens and the state of dance music in 2021. “I Do It Like That… You Love It?” is now out on all platforms.
Listen to “I Do It Like That… You Love It?” here: