25-year-old Singaporean and London-based multimedia artist yeule will be at the Black Cat on Thursday, October 19 as part of their North America tour following the release of their third studio album softscars, released in September to high acclaim. Their first two albums, Serotonin II (2019) and Glitch Princess (2022), explored the fringes of pop with extensive synth and glitch uses that gave a futuristic veneer to yeule’s sound. But on softscars, yeule pivots to pop steeped in 90’s rock influence, with grungy guitar riffs and indulgent percussion hits, while still maintaining a distorted cyberpunk focus. The effect is a soaring, frantic movement between hushed synth-backed verses, soaring guitar driven melodies, dream-pop choruses, and corroded, glitched-out instrumental breakdowns.
softscars thematically explores the concept of healing trauma. If perhaps reticent on their previous albums, focused more on exploring virtual internet existence, yeule turns introspective for their new LP, bringing up personal scars: physical, like from self-harm (depicted visually by the title of the album opener, “x w x”), psychological, like references to past eating disorders, and generational (political, social, economic, etc.) wounds inherited from the past. These scars are soft because of their recency; they have not yet healed, but making the album has helped yeule begin the process. Despite the intimacy of yeule’s lyrics, they still explore their trauma as a product of the internet age, which allows listeners, especially Gen Z-ers, to relate.
Opening for yeule is Sasami, an artist incorporating in their most recent LP Squeeze industrial and metal into their indie, singer-songwriter approach to music more central to their older music. Doors open at 7:30, and tickets are still available.