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Radio 3's featured artist: Del Bel

Louise Burns

This week, Radio 3’s featured artist is Toronto pop noir group Del Bel, who will be releasing their follow up to 2015’s self titled album this April, titled III. If their first single is any indication, their avant-garde pop sensibilities might see them go from cult hero status to household name.

Del Bel is the project of producer/composer Tyler Belluz and vocalist/lyricist Lisa Conway, the latter of whose voice you might recognise from her other project L Con. Since putting out their first full length Oneiric in 2011, they have toured across Canada, released a collection of critically acclaimed music, and collaborated with the likes of Bry Webb, Bruce Peninsula, and now, Clairmont the Second, who is featured on their new single “Do What The Bass Says.” The song was made because of the band's connection with Wavelength, a Toronto based curated concert series.

“Collaborating with Clairmont came in fruition by trusting Wavelength's consistent curation skills with emerging artists, and seamlessly getting his contact from Jonny Dovercourt,” explains Belluz via email. “Being from two different musical worlds was not a deterrent based off of our common connection with the organization.”

The song's trip hop beat and cinematic production make Conway sound like a smoky old world jazz club singer. The addition of Clairmont the Second's verse further enhances the song's physical feel with his kinetic and rhythmic flow, making it by far the band's most experimental work to date.

While the shift in sound is more of a "natural sonic evolution," according to Conway, she says the new record promises to deliver something for everyone.

"We are continually trying to challenge and push ourselves, and grow," she says. "I've always felt very comfortable writing in linear and fairly abstract song-forms, though I think overall this album is pretty accessible. There are some choruses even!"

III is out April 7th on Missed Connection Records.

Listen to "Do What The Bass Says" below.