Sydney-based artist Greta Balog has dropped a six-track EP featuring a vibrant collection of tracks under her synthwave pseudonym Greta Now. Diverse in styles despite its condensed runtime, Greta deftly various explores sonic palettes while indulging in wilder conceptual whims.
“Listen to just what I say, it’s simple now / Listen to just what I say it’s Greta Now.”
This lyrical fragment is wrested from the manic pinnacle of ‘Studded With Sunbeams’, the frenzied fourth track of Greta Now’s newly released EP Bon Bon. Greta Now is the brainchild of Greta Balog (G2G, DEN), an alter-ego type concept (I think?) in which Greta inhabits a different identity and cuts loose. I believe a wig is involved, but maybe not always. Anyway, I found the aforementioned refrain interesting because of its declarative intent. A powerful iron-clad directive that’s forceful and demands attention – as does the dense layers of sound upon which this flag is placed. It’s Greta Now saying she has arrived – everyone take notice (if you hadn’t already heard Greta Now’s 2017 self-titled 12″, that is) . The rest of the tracks on Bon Bon boast their own compelling edge, too – from the stoic futuristic drive of ‘The Dance’ and ‘Aeroplane vs Car’ to the crystalline hurt of ‘HCC’ and serene wooziness of closing track ‘By’.
Greta Now’s outsized personality laces most tracks with both lofty spectacle, misery, risk and drama – a rollercoaster of tone and content. ‘Kissing With Money’ dissects the lust for wealth, the allure of money and its promise of security, while ‘HCC’ is the despondence felt after being lied to and abandoned on the dance floor. Soon that gloom pivots back to dizzying confidence once more as ‘Studded With Sunbeams’ and we all have to don sunglasses to catch the spectacle. Throughout Bon Bon Greta Now pivots at neck-breaking speed, but this oscillation is really what makes the EP a fascinating listen. Persona or not, Greta Now’s visceral and unrepentant approach is engaging conceptually and sonically, and her work is a great addition to the building tide perpetuated by fellow synth-wielding mutineers.