Delphinium Music label (label)
26 April 2016 (released)
21 April 2016
Onyx Moon, the debut record from Maine duo, PORT OF Est. is an inspired piece of irresistibly catchy modern pop that you can take pleasure in without any guilt.
Hailing from East Coast Portland, the duo consisting of singer, Hannah Tarkinson and producer, Todd Kitchens have crafted a formidable collection of honest, thoughtful pieces that are welcoming yet challenging. A cohesive confluence of influences that should attract both experimental and straight-forward pop fans alike.
'Lupine' swirls in to the speakers with Tarkinson's airy coo. Her vocal lines deftly do the harmonic swoops and dives of mid-nineties Bjork at her prime. The comparisons to the Icelandic fairy will be inevitable but where Bjork's wails can wear thin before you get through an album, Hannah Tarkinson's voicings have softer edges that keep you on board to end.
Lead single, 'Valentine In My Headphones' is impossibly infectious. Warm blanket synths and a spinning top bass line subtly underscore her charming effortless chorus. For techy aficionados there is a world going on underneath the surface. The music is lush yet clean but Kitchens' production cleverly lets her take centre stage to be your Valentine in your own pair of headphones.
Current single, 'Clash', features Tarkinson's vocals being disseminated in to a chaotic digital stream before Kitchens' comes in to duet with her on the refrain “I'll find my home” as if to pluck her out of oblivion and bring her back to earth.
'Sister Wolves' is a powerful and refreshingly warm statement on camaraderie and solidarity overcoming petty problems. The song's signature eponymous howling recalls the calls of strength by a certain redhead and her Machine.
Album closer 'Kamikaze' feels like that scene near the end of a disaster movie where the smaller meteorites are starting to streak across the sky ahead of the big one that's coming to wipe everyone out. That moment where the main love interests stare in eerily calm reflection at the horizon, at peace with the inevitable.
PORT of Est. have created a lasting medley of wise personal examinations. Equally fitting while staring out a window on a rainy day or sitting by the ocean on a warm afternoon.