The Canadian-Ukrainian duo Ummagma have been releasing some really amazing music over the last few years. We’ve covered them a few different times for multiple different releases. The duo of Shauna McLarnon and Alexander Kretov create dreamy music which draws influence from dreampop and shoegaze. On November 13, Ummagma released their latest EP, Frequency on Raphalite Records.
Frequency is easy to get lost in. McLarnon’s voice is about as dreamy as they come, and that’s obvious from the first track “Orion”. Mixed with some really incredible instrumentation and even harmonies from Kretov, “Orion” is a track that sets the stage beautifully. “Lama” is the second track on the record, and it’s one we’ve heard before. Ummagma released a 7-track record all of remixes of “Lama”, which is a brilliantly composed track that you’ll keep coming back for. Then comes a true stunner in “Winter Tale”, McLarnon’s voice soars and becomes entangled with itself, with perfect combinations of synth and electronic drums. Speaking of synth, the ambient instrumental “Galacticon” is a mind-blower. The next track, “Ocean Girl” ends the EP proper, and it’s totally different from the rest of the record, featuring Kretov supplying smoky sounding vocals over acoustic guitar.
When I said you’d be coming back for more “Lama” I wasn’t lying, after “Ocean Girl”, the EP features three remixes of Lama, including one from Robin Guthrie of Cocteau Twins. Guthrie’s remix is an ethereal reimagination of “Lama” that just feels huge. Mal Holmes (from Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark) supplies a remix with a great groove. The third and final remix is from Marc Joy of Welsh shoegazers Lights That Change. It starts out very simple with mostly McLarnon’s vocals before it takes off and becomes an epic track, much like the original but with way more electronics and a real throwback vibe.
Frequency is a dreamy EP that really showcases Ummagma’s ability to create an atmosphere in their music. Between a dreamy voice and some really interesting synth and guitar work they create a sound that draws from their influence but is wholly their own. Over the last few years, people have begun to take notice, as you can see by the three remixes on Frequency, as well as many other dreampop and shoegaze artists new and old.
Grab a copy of Frequency on Bandcamp here.
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