Shygirl: Nymph review – a sensual, playful debut | Electronic music

WWith her soft, almost whispered falsetto hovering over low-frequency beats, London-based Blane Muise, aka Shygirl, has become a sensual and pervasive force in British club music over the past five years. Working regularly with experimental producers such as Arca and the late Sophie, Muise has established herself as the perfect singer to slip between the melodic cracks of their fractal sound design. For example, on 2020’s Slime, she sings rap with shrill percussion over Sophie’s sparse basslines, while 2018’s Nasty lets Muise’s languid voice ring against Sega Bodega’s thunderous kick drums.

On her debut album, the typical grit of Muise’s productions is replaced by something very clear. Opener Woe references her earlier output with its sinister bass synth, but Nymph soon opens up to the plucked guitar melodies of Shlut and Firefly’s hyperpop inflections. Highlights come on Coochie (A Bedtime Story), when Muise’s sexual lyrics are combined with the song’s vocal melodies to create a playful exploration of intimacy, while on Honey jungle breakbeats are turned into an R&B ballad by her pleading singing. After exploring the dark side of the dance floor, Nymph finds Muise experimenting with his more irreverent aspects.

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