In Review: Komang - 'Dewi'
Komang, otherwise known as Rosie Clynes, came out of nowhere. Her debut single, ‘Dewi’ - a harbinger of the forthcoming EP, Mythologies – is the sunset wedding of traditional Indonesian musical cultures and modern electronic pop. There’s a fragile quality to Clynes’ production – her vocals in particular; her voice is soft, almost breakable, yet soulful nonetheless, it’s a spell of entrancement – one you can dance to. ‘Dewi’ also treads the line of pretence perfectly; for all of Komang’s traditional influence, she avoids the “honest to God” hippy pantomime that so often ruins similar fusion projects – instead, ‘Dewi’ just feels fresh.
Clynes lists her influences as Erica Kelsey Lu, Erykah Badu and Little Dragon – whose various footprints can all be clearly made out, Little Dragon especially. The repetitious drum machines also conjure echoes of Young Marble Giant’s Colossal Youth (1980); Komang rings with a similar twilight ambience, filled with city lights and passing cars and music from inside deep buildings. Komang’s sound is tough to pin down, which is part of what makes it special, there’s an ethereality there, but also a mean beat, one that drops in and out, daring a potential crowd.
Self-described as “Solange with an Indonesian twist”, and “neo-soul meets Balinese mystic power”, Komang may well have stumbled upon something new and exciting, a synthesis yet to grace the mainstream and one we should all be excited for. In the words of avant-garde pop musician and visual artist, Sui Zhen (Clynes’ mentor via the ‘Signal Young Creatives Lab’), “her knack for weaving stories into electronic soul and 90s house-style production is truly exciting – I can’t wait to hear more from Komang.”
Mythologies is out via Ditto later this year.