Mark Berg (aka Tropic Harbour), like many musically-minded bedroom DIY’ers, has a special affinity for tones and rhythms that evoke memory and a hazy half-remembered nostalgia. The Edmonton pop auteur will likely be lumped in with that genre of ill repute, Chillwave. But the chiming guitars and streaks of brightly lit synths that populate his songs have a closer relationship to 80’s dream pop than they do to any modern synth iteration. His vocals, which recall a hybrid of Robert Smith’s emotive crooning and Ian McCulloch’s fervent persuasiveness, aren’t buried under layers of dime-store synth sounds and lo-fi drum pads but are put center-stage, allowing the lyrical resonance of his words to guide the deceptively uncomplicated melodies.
Berg is set to release the debut single, “Golden Rays,” under his Tropic Harbour moniker in the form of a limited edition 7″, but you can head over to his bandcamp page to download it now (name your own price, of course). Taking cues from his musical namesake, Berg invests the song with a faded summery veneer — where technicolor synths, shimmering guitars and a simple percussive backbone guide the song along to some faded point just a little further down the beach. We may be reaching the last stretches of summer but “Golden Rays” is more than happy to provide one last glimpse of the waves and warm sun that already seem to be fading quietly to the west.
Beats Per Minute is proud to premiere the debut single, “Golden Rays,” from bedroom dream popster Tropic Harbour.