Goddess Country by Disco Sam is a heartfelt synth-pop album with clear eighties inspirations. It uses its synth-pop styling to tell love stories, articulately exploring the complexities of romance.
Opening with Florida, the album shows off the bright and shiny timbre of its synths. They work with the vocals and create an energy that feels positive and melancholic at the same time. The speaker understands that his time with his partner is temporary but thinks of their romance in Florida together as a place he can return to in his mind. I think the fleeting nature of the love is what makes it so beautiful in this one.
The vocals are raw and honest. You get the sense that he is singing from the heart through the subtle, emotional edge present in his performance.
The vibe of the album is changed by the song Wife, injecting a retro jazz-electronic steeze that is built with high register synths and a deep, marching bassline. This timbre works fantastically with the vocal register of Disco Sam. The way the melody reacts to the vocal changes feels authentic. It comes across as impromptu and carefully crafted at the same time.
Those retro synth vibes are taken to the next stage on Playing In The Deep End, harkening back to the feeling of uncontrollable love and insecurity that comes from throwing yourself into a new romance.
Love Bomb is a personal favourite of mine because of its excellent melodic composition. This is the track where the interaction between the keyboard and the synth works best. I think this is because of the diversity within the sonic tapestry of the track. The highs and lows of the song’s register create a diverse atmosphere that elevates each aspect of the track through its contrast.
That being said, the guitar playing on Delilah California is another strong part of the project. The riff communicates an ease and comfort in love that is mirrored in the lyrics.
Overall, the album is strong throughout but the tracks come into their own in the second half, providing excellent melodic components, and cohesively exploring the narratives of love stories along with the lyrics.