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KATIE DEY — ASDFASDF

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Orchid Tapes is one of the leading perpetrators of lo-fi pop music, and while the label as a whole tends to, at best, be a mixed bag, occasionally a few gems stand out. One is the disarmingly off-kilter debut from Melbourne’s Katie Dey, asdfasdf, which plays out like postmodern dream pop filtered through Micachu-esque art pop. The sound is familiar, almost nostalgically so, but still odd and hard to place. On one hand, the weirder end of the K Records spectrum seems like a starting point, as if Old Time Relijun was a Lois Maffeo project. At the same time there are echoes of mainstream early-to-mid-2000s indie rock, of the sort you’d hear on TV soundtracks. ”Unkillable” sounds like it is a pitch-shifted The New Pornographers song. The tinny peakiness of the songs and charmingly simple melodies lend a warmth to asdfasdf that most releases of this ilk, creating an atmosphere that feels organic rather than affected.

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