Melbourne synth pop-rap duo nightlight are the kind of group that don’t need to blow up to know they make good music. Having been releasing consistently since 2018, building a catalogue consisting of one 5-track EP and a further two singles, it is evident that nightlight know what they’re doing with the sound they’ve honed over that time, and aren’t rushing anything.
The girls’ consistency doesn’t stop with the releases, but also their according sonics and aesthetics – throughout all of their distinguishable ‘eras’ thus far. Picture a pair of Nintendo-crazed pastel-goths, making lush alt-pop that you hear in colours – and you get a vague idea of what you’re in for with nightlight. This vision progresses greatly with the group’s newest single, GIRLS, which adds a bit more of a smooth electronic feel to their existing catalogue.
Mixed by Marshall Gray and Mastered by Matty Sievers, the song moves away from the girls more frequent territory of boppy RnB-infused alt-pop, opting for Autotune for the first time, in the girls first official hyperpop venture – while the signature elements of nightlight still shining through, maintaining both the brand and the existing sound without simply recreating an old song sonically. The signature synth component provided by keyboardists Hayley is perfectly complemented by the light soprano voice of Laura – whose shimmery vocals are so impressive that a certain YouTube channel has posted a stolen mp3 mistakenly taken for a leaked unreleased Ariana Grande song. The same video has amassed 726k views, proving the pure ability and musical prowess that merely HALF of the duo possess, despite it being stolen property that has been posted without proper credit to it’s creators.
Lyrically, GIRLS details the point of view of growing up a queer teen yearning for a sense of self-acceptance free from doubts and gaslighting, in a world where growing pains are mostly mental, and hard enough without the differences and alienation any LGBTQ+ teen can relate to. These challenges are worsened by being often treated as nothing more than a buzzword in friendship circles and other supposedly nurturing environments. This kind of messages within songs are becoming more and more prominent, and it’s beautiful to see – with acts like King Princess, G Flip and flowerkid not only embracing fluid and non-binary gender and sexuality into their music, but also championing it lyrically – doing wonders for the next generation of queer artists and even just other young adults going through similar experiences that previously have not been represented adequately in local music. The expansive production and exultant tone make for a distinct and individual track, unmistakable for any other artist once nightlight is on your radar.