THE OPENING lyrics on the newest offering from Belgian electronic artist Charlotte Adigéry beckon “There’s nowhere to go,” but the dynamism of the production and Adigéry’s performance prove otherwise. In preparation of an upcoming compilation release from DEEWEE (the label founded by Soulwax/2manydjs), Adigéry’s “Bear With Me (and I’ll stand bare before you)” lives up to its name, with its stripped-back production highlighting the allure of the Belgian artist.
Fractured in its presentation, “Bear With Me” offers the listener several disjointed elements in succession: an incomplete drum sequence here, short vocal harmonies there, all tied together by Adigéry’s natural bravado on the mic. With the entrance of a plump synth bass, the track takes on a downtempo electro-funk vibe as Adigéry continues to add and remove musical ingredients. Creating and rearranging a musical puzzle, the listener has no clear sense of where the cut is headed, but each alteration of the song is equally intricate and organic.
Take the string arrangements as an example: initially presented as a crying interjection behind Adigéry’s vocals, they morph into a full-bodied foundation for the bridge to explore harmonies and textures beyond expectations for a track of this nature. Dynamism in the production is explored throughout each element of the track, with Phil-Collins-esque drum fills and disjoint vocal lines maintaining the track’s forward momentum. In line with the bare elements of the production, Adigéry takes a similarly minimal approach to her lyrics, tackling the frustration of many artists during the pandemic. With wry lines referring to dolphins in Venice and livestreams, her lyrics beckon listeners to stay with her through this tumult, promising to bare herself fully through her artistic expression.
“Bear With Me” is a spacious abstraction of nu-disco and electro-funk aesthetics, highlighting groove and experimentation over glitzy maximalism. The track is an exclusive release from the upcoming compilation Foundations from DEEWEE, due out on May 7th. With contributions from several label-mates over the years, the project strives to be a time capsule for an eventful year, and Adigéry provides an enthralling initial offering.
The compilation Foundations is due out May 7th from DEEWEE, and “Bear With Me” is out now digitally.