Radio Laika's Lockdown EP “Blue on the Inside (Unplugged)" is Worth Your Time
Quirky art-pop trio Radio Laika released their unplugged EP “Blue on the Inside” last month; a kaleidoscopic collection of their special abilities with word and sound.
The fascinating group, formed by multi-instrumentalists Megan, Darragh and Felix, took to their bedroom studios to record “Blue on the Inside” once quarantine was announced in the UK and their (incredibly fun and weird) live shows were rescheduled. The pure effort and mental strength it takes to create something so beautiful and refreshing in a situation so tough is incredibly admirable.
Darragh, Megan and Felix of Radio Laika shot by Lara Hempsall
For those who have seen Radio Laika live, this EP encapsulates their essence in their most-loved songs, and also gifts us with a reimagined acoustic version of their debut single “Video Game”. One of my favourite things about this EP is that the group have not completely unplugged; Felix’s synths still make many welcome appearances throughout the tracks, adding an extra element to completely chill out to.
When I first pressed play on this new project and the EP launched into “J S P R - Unplugged”, I was mesmerised by the originality and inventiveness of its lyrics. Words such as “I would grow you flowers, but my thumbs are the wrong colour” sit at the base of a dreamy alt-pop landscape, drenched in chiffon and a light summer’s breeze. Megan delivers her words with a no-fuss sincerity that could open up an authentic conversation with even the most superficial, and this musical honesty feels quite healing.
“Video Game - Unplugged” is a wonderful re-imagination of Radio Laika’s classic sound, featuring their signature catchy little synth lines and wet, expansive guitars. The song climbs to a magical finale, with vast and colourfully calming guitar swirling around a magnificently refreshing trumpet. It’s just simply beautiful.
"Blue on the Inside (Unplugged)" artwork
The EP is not lacking in its more experimental moments, as shown in “There Should Be a First Time for Everything - Unplugged”. The retro melodic synth hits with powerful 80s nostalgia that would be perfect for the next season of ‘Stranger Things’ - Radio Laika have definitely mastered the craftsmanship that goes into creating such emotionally provoking sound. The song showcases one of the more intimate moments on the EP, with cleverly ironic coming-of-age lyrics such as “we talk like we’re in a badly scripted teen drama” cutting through the noise.
“Something Something - Unplugged” is the last song on the EP, and it is another Radio Laika classic. The stripped back instrumentation makes way for genius lyrics once again, which are soon taken over by glorious noise-making to round off the group’s latest eccentric creation. Certainly, Radio Laika have turned our dreams into sounds.
You can listen to the trio’s EP “Blue on the Inside (Unplugged)” over on their Bandcamp and on all major streaming platforms such as Spotify. Be sure to follow the group on their socials for more orange and blue goodness: