February 02, 2023

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Magdalena Bay’s Hypnotic “Hysterical Us”

Magdalena Bay as thee trippy-pop duoMagdalena Bay promo photo

Magdalena Bay, LA’s psych-pop duo, released the final single to their album Mercurial World this past Tuesday.  We decided here at Music Daily that it was one of the many great tracks to dissect from their first full-length project.  Additionally, the track was paired with a trip-inducing music video that perfectly encapsulates the sound Magdalena Bay has harbored and perfected.  Undoubtedly, group members Matthew Lewin and Mica Tenenbaum are making pop music that is gooey, sweet, and bright.  With influences from Grimes to Charli XCX, the duo is creating a space in music uniquely theirs.  How did they do it on Hysterical Us?

Hysterical Us is a mix of emotions and colors

Speaking on the single, the pair said it was about paranoia and their anxieties.  Lyrics like “Sucking in oxygen. How did we learn to breathe?” describe trivial intrinsic thoughts.  Paired with upbeat synths and a bouncy piano, the duo juxtaposes lyrics about paranoia with a cheery sound.  The result is a clever song showing that you do not have to let your anxieties consume you, it is just the way things are sometimes.  Further, the mix of melancholy and playfulness is a style Magdalena Bay uses throughout Mercurial World.  However, on Hysterical Us they lean into the angst of being melancholic.

Transcend with the music video to the track

Hysterical Us Music Video - Magdalena BayThe music video for the track depicts this well.  The video, directed by Ian Clontz, shows Lewin and Tenenbaum driving on a gloomy day.  Then, after passing through a psychedelic portal the van is transformed into an eclectic funk-monster bus.  Indeed, the music video is an absolute trip in itself; complete with crazy patterns, dancing monsters, and a kaleidoscope of colors.  In all, the video, conceptualized by Milagros Collective, depicts a happy sadness from Magdalena Bay.  Certainly, a perfect way to visualize the words and sonics of the song itself.

Finally, I can not recommend enough checking out the album that houses Hysterical Us; their new project Mercurial World.  Magdalena Bay is definitely coming into their own sound.  As a result, their debut album is a great example of how they’re doing it.  Keep up with them on Twitter and Instagram at @MagdalenaBay to see what’s next.

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