Review: Retrofette's New Single "Lover In Japan" Is a Tasty Summer Splash of Synthwave

By: Norman Hittle

Denver-based Retrofette are an electropop act with 80s era funk and a splash of synthwave. Their latest single, “Lover in Japan,” is due out just in time for summer. Check it out:

If you left it up to me to describe Retrofett’s sound, I would liken it to what might have happened if Broken Bells, Julian Casablancas of the Strokes, Prince, and David Bowie had the chance to record a song together. Is it that good?! Yes, yes it is.

Frontman Sean Culliton pretty much nailed the overall feel with his comments on the song when he told us, “Lyrically, (it’s) a melancholy note written to an estranged lover. But sonically, it's a sunny day at the beach with neon sunglasses and volleyball montages.”

Retrofette. 

Retrofette. 

The band is the byproduct of keyboardists Sean Culliton and Xavier Provencher's love for vintage synthesizers and sweaty dance floors. Joined by synth bassist Ben Weirich and drummer Dylan Johnson on stage, the quartet’s brand of 80s-tinged synthpop was born in March of 2016. Aside from this single, Retrofette released its debut three-song EP I Don’t Mind in 2016. They have also played BolderBeat’s Official Showcase at 2017’s Underground Music Showcase, been listed as one of 303 Magazine's top Denver acts to see, and selected as the “Best Pop” act of 2017 by Westword Magazine.

The guys will be celebrating the release of “Lover in Japan” this Saturday, June 2nd at Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox. The night will also feature sets from Motion Trap and DJ Clay Cornelius. Tickets and show details here.

-Norman

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Treehouse Sanctum Premiere New Music Video for "Chacala" - Watch

By: Hannah Oreskovich

With strummy guitar bits and percussive hits that keep you moving, Treehouse Sanctum’s new single “Chacala” takes you on an audible journey through the scenescape it captures in lyrics: an isolated beach down in Chacala, Mexico that beheld some magical experiences for frontman Sam Rymer. With Rymer and member Danya Lynn Prado’s wave-like harmonies, a mariachi-esque interlude thanks to Dewayne Rymer’s trumpet playing, and dreamy, floating melodies throughout, this track is an exciting peek into the Denver six-piece’s upcoming record, Vivere. The album, which was co-produced by Grammy nominated engineer Nick Sullivan (Dispatch, Los Lobos) and mastered by Grammy winner Jonathan Russell (Taylor Swift, Willie Nelson) will drop May 5th.

Treehouse Sanctum. 

Treehouse Sanctum. 

“Chalaca,” which premiered via Paste last month, holds particular significance for frontman Sam Rymer, who spent time in Chacala, Mexico building houses for local impoverished families and surfing.

“It was a trip of personal discovery,” said Sam, adding, “It was a profoundly spiritual experience.”

Treehouse Sanctum explored the visualization for the “Chacala” music video through illustrations that sync well with the audible journey of this tune. With sketches by Amy Koch Johnson and filming by Ben Fout, Rymer's trip comes to life through the color of Johnson’s drawings while the ¾ waltz timing of the tune keeps you moving from one picture to the next.

Said Rymer, “The focus of the song is a young man, in the sea, at night, far from the shore, and alone.”

Treehouse Sanctum’s album release party for Vivere is slated for April 8th at Ophelia’s Electric Soapbox. Bambooty & DJ Em will share the stage. Tickets here.

-Hannah

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All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.