In an opening visual-strobe, the video for Noirre’s “taste ($$$)” wastes no time in laying the mind-bending psychedelia on us in a kaleidoscopic display of artistry that is as surreal and evocative as the music it was designed to interpret is. Noirre is outfitted in a shower cap in a bath full of fruit loops, sitting before a piñata with a bat in his hands, consuming foods of the messiest variety and laying against a bed of stuffed animals, all inside of a mere five shots that have been strung together in a dreamlike synchronicity that somehow complements the cadence of the sensuous beats that grow in size as we absorb whatever obscurity is placed in front of us on screen. While the music video for “taste ($$$)” is dominated by seizure-inducing images (literally – check out the warning in the first frame), its true star is its lush soundtrack, which despite having an experimental structure, contains some of the most sleekly accessible harmonies that Noirre has ever committed to master tape.
The rhythm in this song is unurgent and, in some spots, intoxicatingly pendulous. The grooves never descend into slothfulness, but there’s something to be said about their discordant relationship with the vocal track. Noirre is always a step ahead of the drums, and although the synths carve out his path for him, it’s always implied that the instrumentation is following the beat that his verses are creating exclusively. It’s an ambient stylization, but don’t let this single’s impressively avant-garde construction fool you – its hook is as simple as they come. The chorus swings in a familiar pattern that is relatively similar to what I’ve heard in past studio recordings from Noirre, and it’s actually got enough of a grind that it could make for some interesting nightclub fodder were it manipulated by the right DJ. I wouldn’t say that “taste ($$$)” was designed for the dancefloor, but you could absolutely make the argument that its boisterous beats are as integral to the narrative in the lyrics as the sexy drawl of its lead singer is. Noirre is an artist who values textural expression more than most, and though this isn’t his most physical track, it’s nevertheless among his most provocative.
Its surrealism might be a lot for some casual listeners to handle all at once, but for those of us with a discriminating taste for experimental pop, “taste ($$$)” is a strangely decadent treat that can stimulate all of your senses simultaneously. There are a couple of components to this track that are admittedly steeped in pomp and bravado, but that’s precisely what makes it such an intriguing listen this spring. Where so many of his contemporaries are chasing minimalist melodies, Noirre is going all-in on larger than life instrumentals, enigmatic lyricism and druggy dirges that have more in common with the heavyweight hits from modern avant-garde stalwarts than they do anything in mainstream pop, R&B or hip-hop. I was only somewhat familiar with his work prior to now, but you’d better believe that I will be keeping a close eye on what he turns out of the studio next.