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Bandi - EP Review: Bittersweet

02 Mar 2023 // A review by Danica Bryant

Kiwi-Brazilian artist Bandi spent her years growing up between Auckland, Los Angeles and Sao Paulo, a unique background that makes for a thrilling array of sound and style on her debut EP Bittersweet. Mixing bubblegum pop with soulful R&B, it's a collection perfectly designed to saturate the airwaves.

Opening track WGMI is a cheery pop track led by a delicious guitar groove. Bouncy chorus melodies and uplifting lyrics make the song extremely fun and danceable, although its sound is somewhat derivative of Doja Cat's Say So. The guest verse from fellow Kiwi act Jupiter Project injects some extra energy into the song, defining it as the EP's most commercially appealing track.

Ain't Nobody and Sweet Thang both opt for a darker sound, with sultry vocals and lines that adopt a more flirtatious, almost villainous perspective. Flecks of Spanish flamencos as well as Billie Eilish-esque alt pop flutter through their production. But what stands out most is Bandi's delivery. She sings with sincerity, but also with her tongue firmly in cheek, as if she knows something her musical subjects don't. It frequently piques the listener's curiousity, dragging them into her sonic world.

The record's most commanding moment is its closing number Lights Out. Mixing classic orchestral flourishes with traplike production and modern slang, it's the most experimental offering on Bittersweet. Initially reminiscent of artists like Ariana Grande and Sabrina Carpenter, the subtle vocal filtering on the chorus takes it to fresher territory that suggests exciting new directions for this performer.

Bittersweet is a strong debut which pop lovers will love. It does leave ample room for Bandi to establish a clearer personal artistic identity and sound outside of her influences. But there is certainly a level of polish to these songs that makes Bandi one to watch, and her knack for great, catchy songwriting is a skill that can't be taught.

Rating: ( 4 / 5 )
 

About Bandi

Kiwi-Brazilian artist Bandi was born and raised in Auckland, New Zealand. From a young age, she bounced back and forth between the Foothills of Los Angeles (LaVerne) and a small suburb of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Her music is heavily influenced by her life experiences, merging a sound shaped through her time travelling around Brazil and LA. As a multi-lingual artist, she integrates aspects of her south american culture into her music, often singing in Portuguese and Spanish.

Garnering comparisons to the likes of Jhene Aiko, Cassie, ABRA and Doja Cat, her music can be described as a vibrant mix of bubblegum pop and soulful RnB, catching listeners off guard with her powerful range and angelic voice.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Bandi

Releases

Bitterswett
Year: 2023
Type: EP

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