Get ready to jump, scream and dance to Stay Illusion’s mix of pop and rock on their ‘play pretend’ EP.
Stay Illusion – Play Pretend EP
The Swiss band Stay Illusion is back with the EP ‘play pretend’, following their album ‘Our Voices Heard’ released in 2021. Taking Switzerland by storm, Stay Illusion are making quite a way with their music and have collected many awards as well as being played on radio and even on TV. ‘play pretend’ rides this wave of success as the band is expanding in Europe, rightfully sitting close to bands like Måneskin and The Pretty Reckless.
‘circles’ opens the games in an energetic and angry tone, setting the theme of the EP, dealing with the fakeness of our daily lives and how we can start again and go back to our true selves. An enticing guitar riff leads the song and the frontwoman’s captivating vocals succeed at conveying both rage and the feeling of being lost, alternating power and softness.
‘look at me now’ is the anthemic song of the EP, starting off with a sultry guitar solo and the lyrics ‘you thought you could change me/your words gonna break me/sticks and stones won’t break my bones’. The song takes a spin on getting back power from someone who put us down and does so in an alluring, catchy way. The riff in the chorus balances between recalling other songs and having its own right, making it possibly a live show favourite.
After these two explosive tracks, Stay Illusion take us to a more emotional side of the EP with the track ‘waves’. As the lyrics ask if the other person is better off without them, the atmosphere here is melancholic and more self-reflective. The gritty guitars leave space for soft piano and vocals take up the whole space.
A surprising change of scenery comes with the following track ‘fix you’, which explores more pop and dance sounds, taking the listener to the club. However, the theme of the track is still quite deep and nostalgic, with the singer claiming ‘it’s not my job to fix you’. We can rightfully say ‘fix you’ is the perfect track for crying in the club while dancing!
As the closing track, Stay Illusion chose ‘original’ to deliver the final message of the ‘play pretend’ EP.
‘original’ has an infectious choice of sounds and melodies, with the verses being more straight-up pop and the chorus sweeping it all off. This track is perfect to sing-along to and takes us on one last ride before the EP ends.
Stay Illusion’s blend of pop, rock and alluring atmospheres is not to be missed and you should go blast ‘play pretend’ immediately!
In the band’s words: [play pretend] encapsulates feeling totally lost, but also finding yourself in the music and being able to express the true you. This EP celebrates being bold and unique, even if it doesn’t always reflect how you’re feeling inside.
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Words by Anna Colombo