When the Korean rock band Rocket Diary formed in 2005, they were issuing solid, ’90s-influenced emo-influenced pop-punk, with a smattering of synth.
The group disbanded briefly in 2009 for their compulsory service in the South Korean army and when they returned in 2012, they quickly read the writing on the wall and decided to upgrade their sound for the changing times.
Under their new name We Are The Night, the group was able to better reflect our contemporary society.
On their latest single, “Tiramisu Cake,” We Are The Night display the smart ability to capture the post-millennial zeitgeist in both sound and attitude.
Released on April 29, “Tiramisu Cake” is a timely piece of electronic pop.
Whereas a neat metaphor for a tightly-organized band fifty years ago might’ve been a Swiss watch, a more apt comparison for today’s era might be an iPhone.
We Are The Night are sleek and user-friendly, with an eye for aesthetics.
Leaving nothing up to chance, “Tiramisu Cake” comes complete with a social media-referencing video that would be corny if it wasn’t so appropriate for the song.
The band’s shift towards the electronic was a wise move, for a number of reasons.
Notably, We Are The Night has traded in their half-stacks for more portable equipment, as seen in this live video .
And where Rocket Diary’s music was that of a fully-saturated rock group, We Are The Night’s music is all about discrete parts fitting together perfectly.
Even when the song is drenched in the Auto-Tuned harmonies of the chorus, that’s the thickest texture we’re treated to on “Tiramisu Cake.” Other than that, it’s mostly staccato pecks on a keyboard matched with in-the-pocket bass.
The chorus adds a few flecks of percussion with splashes of miniature fireworks in the form of sprightly synthesizer stabs.
That’s all we get, and that’s all we need.
In the song’s minimalist quirkiness, it recalls the brilliant British group Hot Chip, but perhaps with a bit less sly knowingness.
There’s always a hint of sadness in Hot Chip’s brand of electro-pop, whereas We Are The Night seem to fully embrace the bounce and fluff often assiciated with K-pop.
Like the song’s namesake, “Tiramisu Cake,” is light, sugary and enjoyable.
But more than any confection, the song is really more like a pocket-sized, app-equipped iOS device, with infinite pleasing images to swipe with one’s fingertips.
Watch the music video for the 2015 We Are The Night song “Tiramisu Cake” RIGHT HERE Jeff Tobias is a composer, musician and writer currently living in Brooklyn, New York.
As of late, he has been researching arcane tuning systems and working on his jump shot.