September 4, 2021 — Iron Maiden, synthwave remixes, and more! This Yestermade™ Fortnightly features electrified nostalgia, a collection of tracks that’s sure to be an audio journey back to “simpler times.” There are some truly notable names rounding out this Fortnightly, including a real blast from the past that’s been, in a sense, absent for 40 years!
How does one brighten an especially trying two weeks? Turning to the upbeat, rhythmic sounds of synthwave whilst realizing the 80s are still going strong would be a good start if you ask us. If you need help picking a few fitting tracks, check out the Yestermade™ Spotify playlists.
ABBA Ends a 40-Year-Long Hiatus
Everyone’s 2021 BINGO is likely full of surprises, but we are pretty sure it’s unlikely anyone had “ABBA will return with two new singles” on there. Appearing out of nowhere, the new pair of songs ‘I Still Have Faith In You’ and ‘Don’t Shut Me Down’ may not be quite what listeners expected, being used to tracks like ‘Dancing Queen’ and ‘Mamma Mia’, but make no mistake — the essence of ABBA is absolutely still there, with a real, genuine happy-go-lucky Swedish vibe few believed would ever be heard again through new material.
Both of ABBA’s new surprise tracks have an unexpected maturity that shows the classic musical group’s growth in the past 40 years, a time that has been entirely absent of new musical releases, although some of the band members have kept their old material going in various incarnations like the American jukebox musical Mamma Mia! (promoted as Mamma Mia! The Movie) which is entirely based on the ABBA song catalog, and let’s not forget the late 90s girl pop group A-Teens that took the world by storm as a first, successful ABBA rebirth attempt.
“Both of ABBA’s new surprise tracks have an unexpected maturity that shows the classic musical group’s growth in the past 40 years.”
The song ‘I Still Have Faith In You’ feels new and modern yet has a touch of that classic ABBA vibe, acting as the premier track for the group’s surprise return. Its upbeat melody and resonating chorus are reminiscent of a hearty sing-along song that closes out a concert. The second new release, ‘Don’t Shut Me Down’, is danceable but definitely not as catchy. It may not hold weight against some of ABBA’s more notable classics, but it’s part of a strong showing from a four-member band that has not released any new material in decades (although it has kept busy with various Mama Mia showings and more, as mentioned above.)
Apparently, we have James Righton, the keyboardist, and founder of the Klaxons, to thank for the ABBA resurgence. The alt-rock artist has worked with ABBA’s Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus to piece together a 10-track line-up for the upcoming ABBA album Voyage that is slated for release on November 5, 2021 (for readers’ convenience, a recent interview with Klaxons’s Righton revealing more details of the ABBA return can be read over at NME.)
LeBrock Successfully Re-Energize an Older Release
It is difficult to topple the ABBA announcement, but the highly popular synthwave duo LeBrock holds its own with a new release dubbed ‘In Time (ALEX Remix)’. The remix is absolutely supercharged, infusing the soft notes of LeBrock’s original with an electrified synth sound. The original ‘In Time’ is by large considered a classic within synthwave circles and has a familiar, super-likable sound few get tired of.
The new ALEX Remix comes while LeBrock is out touring the United Kingdom. Recent stops in Brighton and Southampton kicked off a full schedule that continues running from September 9 through September 19, with a final showing in Leeds.
‘In Time (ALEX Remix)’ is available on LeBrock’s Bandcamp, along with an instrumental version for those that love the intoxicating synth audio. Of course, it is also available on our synthwave playlist for immediate listening on Spotify.
Bunny X Channels John Waters and 80s Rom-Coms
At the tail end of August, New York-based Bunny X dropped a song that can only be described as delightfully lovely. It is light, airy, and strays from the harsher synth notes that kick up the energy. ‘Back To You’ is simple, but that’s far from a bad thing. Smooth vocals tell the story of lost love and the pursuit of reconnecting with a former beau, and the gentle beat doesn’t undercut the unmistakable emotion.
‘Back to You’ is part of a larger and very exciting project for Bunny X. The synth duo is releasing their first album, Young & In Love, on October 5. If this nostalgic track is any indication of what to expect, then the debut album is sure to be a hit. Several collaborations will help round out the upcoming 10-song album, with notable names like SelloRekt and Don Dellpiero lending their talents.
Young & In Love will release in several mediums, including digital, CD, and cassette.
Maxthor Pays Tribute to Iron Maiden With Style
It has been 35 years since Iron Maiden gave us ‘Wasted Years’ so synth artist Maxthor took a gamble in recreating the heavy metal sounds of the ever-popular English world stage rockers, and it was one that paid off.
“Maxthor’s synth cover of ‘Wasted Years’ is a wonderful update to the mid-80s track.”
Maxthor’s synth cover of ‘Wasted Years’ doesn’t just mimic the sound of Iron Maiden but puts an entirely new energetic spin on the track. Maxthor is known for tracks like the upbeat ‘Into the Light’, the mysterious ‘Fiction’, and subdued sounds of ‘Underworld’.
If there is one thing these tracks have in common, it’s that they perfectly capture the essence of the 80s. Much like ‘Wasted Years’ captures the essence of Iron Maiden — without sounding like Iron Maiden at all. Yestermade™ is officially impressed.
As always, the retro and synthwave scenes are burgeoning with creativity and drive. Yestermade™ looks forward to bringing you, our dear readers, even more goodies. Until the next Fortnightly, get on the Yesterwave’s Spotify playlists — and stay tuned.