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Synthpop Single Review: "La Mer" by Super Drift and Maisie Mae

Karl is a longtime freelancer who's passionate about music, art, and writing.


Super Drift’s La Mer (feat, Maisie Mae) comes to life as trumpeting, flashing synths leap in bright pulses and Maisie Mae’s voice, smoky and expressive, comes in. Her vocals are given a slight distance in the production while gleaming chimes glint and flicker through in light-bearing lines.

The solid drum and bass heartbeat provides support for the caressing vocal melody as it glides in. Maisie Mae gives the lyrics added depth with her smooth, emotive vocals while the medium-high, wide sounding synths cascade in a rapidly wandering pattern.

The drums are strong and full as flickering arpeggios quickly spin in trickling, chiming circles. The bass is dense and drives the song forward. The song shifts to a new segment in which thick, medium-low synths volley in a shadowed pattern while the beat keeps shaping the song. Through it all, Maisie Mae’s vocals encapsulate the emotions in the words.

As Public Image Ltd. had it, this is not a love song. The narrator begins by admitting that she could “never let you in” and adds “tell your friends that this is it.” She talks about seeing “all the little ways you’ve given in” as a sign that the song’s subject is “showin’ me you’ll show up.” She is still wary though.

Our narrator sees that the other person’s restrained hope is “finding a home in what we have” but warns that it’ll only be followed by a “new threat to grasp.” She talks about how the “pressure behind telling the truth” is “tethering” the ties of what she’s accustomed to. There is brutal honesty as she adds, "I’d never deny that I misuse you.” However, she concludes that “I cant find the way to say that I am never gonna change.”

Another stark statement comes from the narrator who points out that she said if she “caught feelings” she’d take off. She acknowledges that the other person’s “ego might be tearing up” but adds that “I thought we had a deal here, so don’t say that I’m unclear.”

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There’s the same blunt expression as the narrator points out that she “told you from the get go, I won’t try” and that she “said you won’t be my valentine.” She understands that the other person thinks she’s a “challenge that you’ll win late tonight” but the final chorus still warns that the narrator won’t change.

© 2021 Karl Magi

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