One of our first reviews EVER was for Kye Kye’s Young Love. That happened in 2011, when “Broke,” the only single to get any radio recognition ultimately became the number 1 song on nationally syndicated RadioU for the entirety of the year. And, here we are in early 2014. The dawning of a new era for Kye Kye, in which much has changed and much has stayed the same, in some ways echoing the progression of this blog. But this isn’t an article meant to stroke our own ego. It is an album review. And at the risk of making a cringeworthy statement of redundancy – Fantasize is fantastic.
Fantasize functions as a natural progression from Young Love, yet from a personal preference standpoint, it blows album 1 out of the water. The record flows seamlessly from one song to the next, with scarcely a stripped down break to be found. A theme, which we hear in opener “I Already See It” functions as a sort of reprise in the sole interlude on the album, title track “//Fantasize//.” Ethereal synths and complex beats swirl around the listener throughout. One other review of the record noted an 80’s throwback feel, which I have to agree with. Not in the cheesy way, but in an enveloping, classic new wave with a new twist sort of way. Heavy bouts of emotion emerge throughout as well, most notably in “Dreams (2 AM)” but none of it is particularly melancholy – just passionate. All of it is pensive though. First single “Honest Affection” has vocalist Olga stretching her abilities to new heights with on point success. Fantasize producer Chat Howat (of Paper Route fame) is getting his hands dirty in an ever growing ensemble of records, and Fantasize will undoubtedly be looked upon in the future as a flagship achievement in what will hopefully be a star-studded resume. Complexity and ambience, two trademarks of Howat, emerge. And the whole thing is catchy.[youtube=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9F3leelYZY&h=297&w=450]
Kye Kye has marked themselves as one of the bands to watch in 2014. With a strategically timed release in early 2014 despite the record being finished for over six months, I think I can confidently say the band made the right move from a marketing standpoint. There’s nothing phony about Fantasize though – they deserve to give themselves the best shot at breaking through to the masses like never before. I really hope they do.