Face and the Features’ second EP, Strange, is a celebration of old-school pop hiding traces of contemporary sound – Texx and the City

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Meet Face and the Features: an indie-pop one-man project from Cape Town, created by singer-songwriter Tristan de Beer. 

He released his debut EP A Dream is a Wish back in 2019, and now, over two years later, his second EP Strange has arrived, offering with it a collection of jazz-fuelled, funk-laden singles that scream of old-school pop. 

And when I say old-school pop, I mean that classic ’90’s sound which harks back to bands like Take That, or the iconic “Rock Your Body” heydays of Justin Timberlake. There are traces of these influences all over Strange, with groove-ready tunes, neo-soul melodies and feverish vocals that could please any aficionado of dance pop. 

“Must Be Dreaming” hinges on mad catchy chorus-lines before jumping into a near-euphoric finale, bringing together glorious saxophones, piano trills and the well-fitting line “I must be dreaming” on repeat. “I Want Blood” puts together a more contemporary blend of sounds, with overlaid synths and a sweet minor breakdown centred around De Beer’s enthused vocals. 

This whole EP is a celebration – a celebration of music, of soul, of dance, and even if it borders dangerously close to an outdated genre, its final redeeming feature is closing track “Trust In Me”. Here, De Beer proves that he’s not out of touch with the modern music scene, piecing together a dark and sensual vocal arrangement that soars boldly into an entirely new era of music-making. 

It’s a super indulgent yet experimental approach, with cinematic production and atmospheric electronics, which together, make for the future-facing, dazzling album closer Strange was searching for. 

Feature pic supplied by artist

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