Years of watching the Eurovision Song Contest should have already told you the word Royaume is French. You’ll have heard (but sadly only a little these days) the phrase Royaume Uni – the United Kingdom, spoke about when the final votes are totted up. In part, it is also the name of an emerging French duo, singer Yumi Aoki and producer-instrumentalist Moon Boy (Frederic Saurin) who collectively refer to themselves musically as Kingdom. The duo first struck out with a delicate sonic, debut offering “Blue Asphalt” in 2016, far from bubbling under the radar, the gracefully understated track set the wheels in motion for heaps of praise coming from the blogosphere and getting signed with PIAS.
Having an instant gush of praise thrust upon them wasn’t something that Royaume neither expected or prepared for in the beginning. Safe in the knowledge people had a taste for their elegant brand of electronica they scurried away to work on more tracks. Now come into fruition as the band’s debut body of work, the “Again” EP. The collection of, tracks are filled with understated, tender-sounds and melodies, best heard from end to end, to be fully appreciated. Although eclectically exquisite, the release isn’t without its highlights. Among the unshakably simple pop songs stacked full of wistful melody and soothing energy, the EP closer, “If We” trickles with a beautiful, mesmerising charm. A charm similarly found in the music of EQ favourites Bim and fellow newcomers Amethysts.
Whereas lo-fi title track “Again” is brought to life with an aesthetically pleasing music video which assists moreover in creating a bolder impact. The mood of the clip is a touch provocative, and more than a little homoerotic. It depicts the practising of shibari, Japanese art that is akin to bondage and is traditionally the preserve of women. It definitely, etches new meaning on the sensual lyrics of the song.
Stick the “Again” EP on to create fifteen of the most spellbinding, soothing minutes you’re going to have today.