Song of the Day: ODESZA - Say My Name (feat. Zyra)

Local Music, Song of the Day
10/31/2014
Jacob Webb
photo by Dave Lichterman

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on The Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Say My Name (feat. Zyra)” by Seattle duo ODESZA from the 2014 album In Return on Counter.

ODESZA - Say My Name (feat. Zyra) (MP3)

Over the past two years, ODESZA's meteoric rise can be attributed to the Seattle duo's ability to craft electronic music that skillfully treads the line between club banger and ethereal soundscape. Named (with a slightly altered spelling) for a ship Harrison Mills' uncle served on, Mills and Clayton Knight first met as freshmen at Western Washington University, deciding to start a musical collaboration during their senior year in 2012. Their debut album, Summer's Gone, was an instant hit in online music communities, and by the time the album's followup EP, My Friends Never Die, was released in fall 2013, the duo were playing shows across the world. The band's second album, this year's In Return, finds the pair sharper and more fluid, utilizing their guest vocalists in unorthodox ways to intriguing results. This is key on lead single "Say My Name", where the duo warp a chopped-up and pitch-shifted vocal sample into a Chicago house-style hook. Guest vocalist Zyra's performance is bold and charismatic on its own, but it's even more engaging as Mills and Knight weave it around shimmering synths and agile beats. Not unlike the pop masterstroke it shares its name with, "Say My Name" is a crossover-ready gem that feels like the work of craftsmen who are just as interested in the inner workings of their song as they are how it will play out with an audience.

ODESZA just played a pair of hometown shows at the Showbox, but if they return to Seattle on the tour behind In Return, that news will be on their website and Facebook. Below, watch the band play "How Did I Get Here" live on KEXP in 2013.

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