Montreal bilingual queer pop icon Maryze explores how snippets of our past actions influence our current lives for better or worse on highly-anticipated debut album 8,a ten-track collection weaving through themes of intergenerational family trauma, mental illness, identity, sexuality, ruptures, forgiveness and acceptance within an expansive electronic alt-pop instrumentation.
Opening with powerful stylings of “Mercy Key,” built on acappella harmonies, which seamlessly darts into sultry, club-ready production “Experiments,” and a classic R&B-pop track with electro-tinged sensibility on “Unofficial,” establishing a vast sonic range in just the first three offerings of the album.
Pop stand-outs on the album include the glossy pop feels of “Panoramic,” stretching into synth pop pulses of “Too Late,” as the album swiftly moves from smooth pop blends to touch on everything from emo and stripped-down ballads to Celtic folk brought to life on “Witness,” keeping our ears perked on each note.
If breakup anthem “Emo,” highlights Maryze’s explosive rock artistry rooted in anthemic guitars and live drums, before flipping into noisy and fierce hip-hop on “Squellettes,” featuring Backxwash. On closer, “Playing Dress Up,” she changes moods once again with the emotive, piano ballad, as the album fades away with a powerful message to consider our history and its impact on the present and future.
Proving that poignant messaging and versatile soundscapes are the pillars of her musicality, Maryze sets up an infinite loop of songs for us to lose ourselves in on this thoughtful album, which enchants, emotes and explodes in all the right moments.