If you haven’t heard of JJ Christie, you need to start paying attention, because he’s been doing some great work in the synthwave community. When he’s not helping to bring together a variety of artists, under the Filtersweep Collective, he’s publishing his own work such as the newly released “Fresh New Idea” which is a great collection of synthpop tunes from the land down under.
Preceding the release with a newsletter campaign, which contained backstory and context for the album, it was a great way to get familiarized with the concept and design that went into the music. I always appreciate when this is done.
For example, with the first track entitled “7th Heaven (Desolation Mix),” it was interesting to learn that it was originally written in 1994, on a Korg Wavestation EX, and was remixed and remastered for this release. The track itself is great, having an otherworldly feel to it, like I’m spiralling through space and time.
Speaking of time travel, the next song “Pay Per View” feels like being transported back to the actual 1980s, with music and lyrics that reminded me of the New Wave movement. In fact, I would dare say that the majority of the album feels this way, which isn’t a bad thing nor is it honestly all that surprisingly considering that JJ Christie has been in the game longer than most in the synthwave community in terms of his overall music producing career.
That said, he is quite versatile, and again while most of the album carries with it that vocalized infused new wave sound, there are some darker elements to also be found in the last track on the album. “The Night (Resolution Mix)” is a nice bookend to the first track, as they have a similar otherworldly feel, but the difference between them is not unlike that of the light side vs. the dark side.
Overall, this is a fantastic release, and implore you to lend your support!