It’ll make sense when you listen to this track, but I swear “Luna Man” by Xenoula was meant to be in French.
“Luna Man” is the latest single by Xenoula from her upcoming self-titled album (coming this November 24). The quality of her voice is reminiscent of a lot of French music, with her gentle sweetness and fragility combined with a slight raspiness. Her voice is idiosyncratic and reminds me overexposed pastel colors and round shapes. The way she sings is soft, and done in a way that stretches and bends and cracks over the music. There is a section of the track where she whisper-sings, and it’s an interesting sort of intimacy to come from a song. She is right there, whispering in your ear, all the while sounding just out of reach. I also really enjoy the way she modulates her voice when she sings.
Her voice slightly reminds me of that of Coeur de Pirate and my mind keeps coming back to drawing comparisons to Melody’s Echo Chamber, but what marks Xenoula’s distinction from others is her actual music. It’s a blend of natural and rhythmic music, layered over some deep, doo wop-y harmonies and futuristic/gentle keyboard strokes. It’s complex in a sense, but it still maintains a sense of minimalistic simplicity. There is a sense of urgency created, while also giving the feeling that you are completely still: like standing on the edge of a freeway or river.
The music is built around a solid beat created with wooden block sounding drums. There’s a very natural feel to it, almost reminding me of the sound of tabla drums from India. There is a minor-key, French bistro-esque way to how the music comes together.
The video she put out for this track is transfixing. The color palette is of fading coral pinks and lavenders and greyish-blues. It reminds you of late sunset, when the colors are slightly muted as night begins to seep into day. The video consists of imagery of forests and bodies of water with a lone figure clad in futuristic, metallic clothes wandering around. It’s a pleasant video to watch, and the aesthetics are not something you see every day. The qualities of Xenoula’s music are imbued and represented in the video.
If you’re looking for a track that’s a good kind of weird and left-of-center, check out Xenoula and her new track “Luna Man” (and keep an eye out for her upcoming album too). It sounds like a splash of clear spring water: nice and cool and refreshing.