Death is Cancelled is out and, I have to confess that, in terms of local music, Hearts Beating In Time gets me everytime. Rebecca Theuma’s project drips dreamy vocals and understated pop, all soaked in sweet synths. Then, there’s the cherry on the cake, that magical marriage of darkness and innocence, translating in seriously addictive tunes and lyrics.
We saw it with Simone’s, the first single to be released from the upcoming album Songs for Girls back in November. And now, we see it again with Death is Cancelled, a glorious existential anthem that delivers the hopelessly romantic vibe we’ve come to expect from Hearts Beating In Time, with lyrics like:
“I think about the end of the world, too much, too much
It makes me want to do nothing at all, not even love you, love you…”
Like Simone’s, Death Is Cancelled gifts us another localised video, unashamedly nostalgic and quite wonderful in the way it combines the gorgeously Byronesque vocals with the unlikely landscape of the feasts of San Gejtanu and St Joseph, in Hamrun, know for the harsh rivalry existing between them.
The video is the work of experimental photographer Ritty Tacsum, and her signature is strong all-through, with imagery that is charmingly unexpected in this context, yet comfortingly familiar and belying the darker nuances of Theuma’s lyrics. I mean, seriously, if the image of the three old gents dancing on Hamrun’s main thoroughfare and the ubiquitous GUTZ shop facade don’t get you, are you even sure you’re Maltese?
Somehow, synths served with nostalgia turns out to be a winning formula even for Death Is Cancelled, proving once and for all that no, EDM influences aren’t always evil.
Songs for Girls is due to be released in July this year. For more music write-ups check out Brodu’s new album Blu, an interview with Three Palaces Festival director Michelle Castelletti, or this piece about The Aristocrats.