Under his new moniker Reaches, Justin Randel is putting his education in musical composition to use in an unexpected way, creating self-proclaimed “avant pop” that bridges the gap between easy danceability and self-aware complexity.
“Avant pop” may leave you scratching your head, but once you crank up “White Birch of the Baltic,” the first single from his upcoming album I Am Alive and Well, you’ll realize that there’s no better term to describe the “introspective party music” that Reaches is turning out.
Randel’s track has a pulsing electronic beat that’s impossible not to groove along to, but the languorous, muted vocals that float overtop subvert the typical sentiments of a party standard. “Try to stay young,” he intones with a sort of winking melancholy, as if he’s writing a club kid anthem for an aging generation.
As Reaches, Randel is piecing together over a decade of experience and insight as a musician and subsequent world traveller, creating intelligent music that goes beyond comfortable classification.
Give “White Birch of the Baltic” a listen below, and look out for I Am Alive And Well, which will be released on February 19th on We Be Friends Records.