Since their first Phoenix New Times feature in 2012, the couple-turned-indie duo known as Bogan Via has been steadily laying out finger-snapping synth rock jams like “Kanye,” “Can’t Go Back,” and their "Wait Up" EP, with steady releases dotting their discography since then. Many similarly-inspired artists like Owl City, The Postal Service, and Beach House have flipped up their sounds to cater to new pop trends, but the local duo continues to hone their melodic craft with their new lyric video titled Videos.
“We've always tried to be a strong indie synth pop voice for the local Phoenix music scene,” say band members Bret Bender and Maddie Miller. “With this new album Tough To Kill, we have brought in some elements of hip-hop blended with our usual synth foundation, and we're excited to hear what listeners think.”
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In similar vein to their past work, Videos builds on their strong synth concepts with less 8-bit production than before, while turning their focus to ambient, trip-hop elements with darker digital percussion. Videos features the dreamy vocals of Maddie relaying abstract lyrics on what it means to be a modern pop star.
“Videos is a satirical view on the life of a pop star, the contrast between the world that they live in, and the one they portray on the outside,” says Bret and Maddie.
“Everything feels very surface level, focused on image and money, and Videos, for us, is a reflection of that.”
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Against an ever-changing colorful background, Maddie lips to lyrics like “I get turned on again, I turn it off I again / I’m telling all my friends, just watch me and you’ll see.” The narrative bases itself on the overzealous objectification found in pop culture, and constantly being seen by the digital public. Bogan Via uses the word "videos” as a symbol of the encroaching insanity one can have living their lives and careers in an online space, gauging their worth by artificial and material possession.
The track reaches its final crescendo with a sweeping, organic piano underlining the electronic production in the final minute.
With their recent November 24 album release show at Valley Bar alongside MRCH, LeTRONZ, and Palm Springs Eternal in the rear view mirror, Bret and Maddie reflected on what they believe was a phenomenal experience showcasing old and new material:
“We've been a band for almost seven years now, and it's always the most exhilarating when we get to play new tracks and get that raw honest gut reaction from the crowd. We [have had] so much love and support from our fans and we can't explain how thankful we are.”