Lycio - 'Up Down'

Birmingham-based alternative pop trio Lycio releases astronomical new single, ‘Ultraviolet’.

I always get excited when a new Lycio song comes out. Even the time they released a song I didn’t blog about because I didn’t fully connect, I was still excited. The reason for this is that Lycio are always changing gears, exploring new elements of their genre bending sound, yet retaining this really cool modern pop feel. Lead singer Genie Mendez always blows me away with her vocal range, confidence and expressive nuances, taking soulful to a grittier, more impassioned level, in a similar way that I swoon over FOURS frontwoman Edith Violet’s voice.

To be honest, ‘Up Down’ draws upon many elements that I usually dislike in music. I’m generally not a fan of dreamy or cosmic influences. Or thick layers of synth. But Mendez, drummer Alex Lowe and synth whizz Charlie Kellie are very good at creating affecting, imaginative songs that sonically take you away from your daily life, as well as drawing their listener into their substantial and meaningful lyrical content.

In this instance, Lycio takes their listener on an intergalactic adventure of star hopping, balancing light and airy feel-good danceable arrangements, with dark and fuzzy textures and a change of vocal tone, shifting into more sinister territory. As if you’ve flown too close to the sun, or are on route to a hostile planet. Or on a more serious level, these shifting sonic elements and contrasting tones reflect the shifting moods felt in the lyrical theme, as Genie Mendez explains:

“Up Down is loosely based around my fluctuation in mood and emotions; hence the title and lyrics ’Up Down’. The chorus is a cry for help, and an expression of the loneliness that comes with mental illness”.

The track also comes with an aesthetically pleasing live performance video featuring celestial light patterns, which compliments the song beautifully.

Words of Karla Harris