INDIE | Keon Masters
In an age where the volume of creative output sometimes trumps quality, it’s good to see an artist getting as much mileage out of their music as possible. Keon Masters once again dug into the trove of killer tracks from his 2019 solo debut, Many Thanks, to release a video for “Limbo” last week. The music video, created by local ambient songwriter Persona la Ave, relies on simplicity. Masters wanders through some empty downtown streets and businesses, while lyrics pop up to follow the music’s soft lows and quasi-orchestral highs. Thanks to the subtitles printed onto the picture, the listener feels the ennui in Masters’ lyrics as he ruminates on his daily life. The visuals have a purposefully gritty flare, recalling old home movies saved on a well-worn VHS. It makes Masters seem more like an old family friend than a local music veteran who’s seen all the ups and downs the Lowcountry scene can offer. Plus, it’ll remind listeners of all the other high points on Many Thanks. Head to YouTube or charlestoncitypaper.com to see the full video. —Heath Ellison
ALTERNATIVE POP | Estee
At the risk of sounding redundant, Estee’s latest LP In the Dream is, well, dreamy. The album, awash with a synthwave aesthetic and punchy pop hooks, earns its title every step of the way, giving listeners a mix of ’80s nostalgia and modern indie creativity. “We started work on this album in 2015 and wrapped mastering in late 2019 so it’s been with me for quite a long time and it’s really grown and changed with me,” Estee says. “I curated the song order so that if you listen to the album in order, front to back, it flows up and down in terms of energy.” Estee’s control of the record’s dynamics is one of the biggest assets throughout the LP. “Forever,” one of the songwriters’ favorites, smartly brings the volume down on the chorus, shifting into a moody quiet that perfectly compliments the rest of the track. Whether it’s Estee’s sultry, whispered vocals or the lush production accompanying her, there’s a lot to swoon over on In the Dream. Listeners can keep up with Estee’s latest at facebook.com/esteegabaymusic. —Heath Ellison
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