People Press Play: People Press Play

At its simplest, System (Future 3 members Anders Remmer, Jesper Skaaning, Thomas Knak) plus singer Sara Savery equals People Press Play. But reducing the quartet and its self-titled album to an equation does a disservice to this exceptional album's fully-realized electronic pop. Informed by its creators' many years of experience in constructing meticulous electronic atmospheres and rhythms, the album's ten songs are intimate, melancholic, joyous, dreamy, and pulsating—perfect vehicles for Savery's versatile voice, which easily moves from crystal clear (“These Days”) and intimate (“Always Wrong”) to alluring (“Hanging On”).

Traces of other groups can be glimpsed: a song like “Frail” likens People Press Play to a more beat-focused Susanna and the Magical Orchestra; “Always Wrong” pairs Savery's voice with a bass-heavy propulsion reminiscent of Remmer's Dub Tractor style; and a subtle injection of shoegaze roar informs “Everything” and “Stop” while “Girl” sweetens her whispered murmur with blurry sheets of sound. And though People Press Play's style is distinctive, largely instrumental tracks like “Studio” and “That Walk” reveal that the quartet's style isn't radically different from System's (notwithstanding its recent move into dubstep on Tempo EP), once Savery's singing is removed. Even so, the sparkle of the musical backing provides a gorgeous support for her relaxed vocal in “Hanging On” while the chiming electro-pop of “These Days” shadows Savery's voice with Theremin-styled counterpoint that—in an alternate universe at least—would have hit single written all over it.

June 2007