GFOTY – Ham Chunks and Wine Review

Since the dawn of the PC Music label, GFOTY has been in the spotlight as one of the most representative artist of their new style, a compelling and catchy mixture of parodistic pop intention and bubblegum hard-dance tunes with the occasional super emotional backlash.

Considering her artistic path, the self-released 2019 album “GFOTY” disappointed many fans. More conceptual than ever, it was an odd collection of strange, short songs, ironic fragments of imaginary potential pop hits. The greatest sin of this bizarre LP was probably that it didn’t provide any chance to dance or to just have lighthearted fun, one of the most remarkable qualities of many PC Music productions.

Now, almost a decade after her debut, Polly-Louisa Salmon’s new EP seems to look back to that direction. Ham Chunks And Wine, out this month via Pretty Wavvy, is a pleasant collection of pushed-up bangers and electronic pop songs, switching between high-speed beats and funnily emotional songwriting.

“Wide” is a track where ongoing synths meet experimental percussion, driving toward a completely messed-up finale, a chaotic and energetic solution which definitely recalls her early mixtapes. “Rid of All” and “By My Side” are both produced by Count Baldor, who has previously collaborated with artists like Dorian Electra and Alice Longyu Gao, and recently remixed 100 gecs’ “stupid horse” along with GFOTY herself. The former is a sort of uplifting post-EDM track with happy hardcore shades, a catchy tune surrounded by robotized vocals and powerful bass driving the song. “By My Side”’s melody explicitly quotes the iconic eurodance track Blue (Da Ba Dee)” by Eiffel 65.

This is not really surprising considering that, throughout her discography, GFOTY has often showed a taste for sampling and quoting hits from the past, especially those that have remained most impressed on our collective memory. But the most surprising and forward-thinking song is probably the lead single “Here With Me”, an unexpected and honest synth pop ballad produced by London-based musician and Black Midi collaborator Jerskin Fendrix, with struggling lyrics, touching piano chords and synthetic strings. It is essentially naive music for having fun and feeling emotional, and that’s why it is so worthy, now more than ever.

 

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