Holly Herndon's "Fade" has it all: vibrating vocals, clattering dance beats, and an intricate arrangement that allows her to take it from a low simmer to a rolling boil. If you like Kraftwerk, Laurie Anderson, and the Cocteau Twins—some of the reference points shared by her label mate Julia Holter—you might also enjoy her elegant, otherworldly approach to electronic music (in addition, the pulsating rhythm recalls the Who's journey into techno funk).
For the first few seconds I thought, "This is nice, but a little... dull." Then Herndon ups the ante, and I've always preferred songs that gain interest as they unfurl over those that hit you in the face from the start before succumbing to conventionality (and I feel the same way about films that fail to live up to their attention-grabbing opening credit sequence).
A doctoral candidate at Stanford, Herndon graduated from Mills College. The photo above also indicates that she'd be perfect for a remake of Sleeper.
Check out the sweaty album teaser from the San Francisco musician below.
RVNG Intl. releases Herndon's debut, Movement, on Nov 13 (LP, CD, and digital).