TOTD: Port Of Est – “Valentine In My Headphones”
One of the most refreshing artists I’ve had the pleasure of stumbling upon recently is the mesmerizing duo Port Of Est from Portland, Maine. The twosome comprised of producer Todd Kitchens and singer Hannah Tarkinson, have an undeniably infectious sound existing somewhere between psychedelic indie rock and edgy electronic experimentation. With Kitchens’ moody and warped production creating a perfect backdrop for Tarkinson’s ethereal voice and bewitching lyrics, Port Of Est bring a unique and majestic exuberance to life.
With their debut single “Valentine In My Headphones,” Port Of Est delivers a blindingly gorgeous track full of maddeningly intricate instrumentation and elegant vocals. The opposing elements of Tarknson’s angelic voice and Kitchen’s bold beat-making, collide to give this tune a cold intensity that leaves the listener haunted and stunned all at once. Just in time for the holiday of love, “Valentine In My Headphone” radiates with a smoldering creativity that truly speaks to the listeners soul. A brainwashing bass line embodies the tune’s heartbeat, while Tarkinson’s luminous voice adds an exquisite ephemeral quality. Scintillating percussion clatters imperiously while the song reaches it’s synth-laden climax. Tarkinson’s heartbreaking vocals are drenched in a beautiful glaze of analog-esque accents.
With the ability to capture a rare emotional vulnerability while still supplying more than enough angst within their music, Port Of Est creates a unique tension that is a joy to experience. Throughout their debut single, we catch glimpses of the duo’s considerable range and eclecticism. Breakbeat, drum and bass, and even hip-hop can be felt within Kitchen’s murky sonic concoction. While Tarkinson’s vocals ooze of folky-pop ambience, applying the perfect amount of sheen to this impressive debut endeavor.
With a full length release forthcoming, Port Of Est is certainly a duo to keep your eyes on. Their Phantogram-like tendencies make them one of the scene’s best kept secrets, and I can’t wait to see what this twosome from Maine puts out next.