ROCOCODE “Panic Attack” (Marquis)
r.i.y.l.: Phantogram, Portishead, Metric, Chvrches
start with: 1, 2, 3, 4
Hometown: Vancouver, BC
Produced by Caleb Shreve (Phantogram, Bear Hands) and Ted Gowans (Tegan and Sara)
Rococode is the Vancouver, Canada based indie pop duo of Laura Smith and Andrew Braun. Their music weaves synths, guitars and soundscapes around dueling boy/girl vocals and heavy bass and drums.
They released their debut album Guns, Sex & Glory to much critical and press acclaim in early 2012. The record was produced by Ryan Guldemond (Mother Mother) and mixed by John Congleton (St.Vincent, Polyphonic Spree). They spent the better part of the next 18 months touring Canada and the US in various capacities.
For their sophomore release Rococode coaxed producers Caleb Shreve (Phantogram, Bear Hands) from New York and Ted Gowans (Tegan and Sara, Fences) from Los Angeles to set up a studio in a cabin, off the grid, in the isolated coastal forest of British Columbia.
Between building fires, checking the solar panels, and failed fishing trips, the foursome set to work on music that shared none of the characteristics of their rustic surroundings. They arranged an army of synthesizers, guitar pedals and drum machines into tight, crisp Alternative gems that sparkle, shuffle and shake at every turn.
Once out of the woods the band put the finishing touches on the recordings at Vancouver’s Monarch Studios, Fireplace Studios in New York and Ultrasound Studios in Los Angeles.
The first song from this set, the haunting and cinematic “Banks”, was released earlier this year. The song, and it’s beautifully shot video, picked up considerable buzz in the online realm and exposed the band to a new fanbase. The band undertook regional touring and made a trip to the prestigious Reeperbahn festival in Hamburg in support of “Banks”.
With all of the material finally complete Rococode have just releasing the Panic Attack EP. The EP contains the band’s new single “Panic Attack”, a radio-ready tune which showcases both Laura and Andrew’s vocals. A remix of “Panic Attack” by online darlings HUMANS is also included in the EP along with the band’s engaging take on INXS’s “Never Tear Us Apart.”
SCENE IN THE DARK: “Rococode has teeth. Every song is just a little edgier than you expect it to be, every verse just a bit more biting.”
GRAYOWL POINT: “Ambition is nothing without execution; the devil is in details. Which is exactly where Rococode outshines its peers.”
NEW CANADIAN MUSIC: “Striking...introspective and built around chilly synth textures. It works well for them, giving Laura Smith and Andrew Braun’s melodious vocals a new sense of depth.”
CANADIAN BEATS: “Panic Attack certainly packs in a lot for an EP that only has five tracks. The electronic style of the songs is not something I would usually listen to, but the duo definitely had my attention in the first few seconds of the title track. “Banks” starts off a bit slower than the previous song and combines vocals that almost echo and a beat that you can’t help but nod your head along to. “The Escape” is probably my favourite off of the EP and starts off much faster than the other songs and brings the vocals of the duo into the spotlight. I also really enjoyed their take on INXS’s “Never Tear Us Apart”. I had never imagined an electronic cover of a rock song sounding as well as it does, but I am glad to be wrong in this case. The last song on the EP is a remix of the title track that brings the song to a different level.”