by tom johnson
While Winter were decisively on an upward trajectory long before we threw them in to the heart of our ‘A Collective Sigh Of Relief’ compilation back in the Summer of 2013, such was the quality and consistency of their output that we’ve kept a sturdy eye on them ever since. Something of a long-time coming, debut album proper, Supreme Blue Dream, is finally here and it’s as emphatically gleaming as we always knew it would be.
While rigorous dream-pop is still very much their thing, the ten track collection houses the most varying and dazzling songs they’ve produced thus far. Quite how they manage to deliver such a solid set from seemingly basic building blocks probably has a lot to do with the sheer scope of talent that Samira Winter possesses and also a little to do with the simple magic of pop music. Whatever the answer, Supreme Blue Dream is the kind of record that sets them apart from their contemporaries through the unfaltering vision that guides it.
By the time ‘Strange Emotions‘ relinquishes the initial tempo somewhat, four tracks in, we’re already buried within Winter’s world; the opening three tracks flying past in a haze of melodic visions, all dream-like imagery and unfaltering musical patterns. From here, ‘Some Kind Of Surprise‘ is gorgeously restrained, all heavy-chested longing and subtle bursts of brass, while ‘Like I Do‘ offers the records most introspective moment with its acoustic-led backing and distant vocals.
After this slight cooling off, the disarmingly pretty ‘Waiting For The Summer‘ raises the temperature once again and from here Supreme Blue Dream never looks back. ‘Flower Tattoo‘ is a sumptuous unraveling, ‘Don’t Stay Away‘ is buoyed by a wave of steadfast percussion and swooning vocals, before closing track ‘Expectations/ Exigências‘ marries blissed-out, tropicana instrumentation with another hearty dose of Winter’s endlessly captivating utterances.
There’s always trepidation when a full record takes a little longer than expected to take form, especially when the chief songwriter is as conspicuously prolific as Samira Winter is, but for all the time spent waiting, Supreme Blue Dream more than delivers. It’s a sturdy, engaging and exceedingly charming collection that will drape a ray of sunshine across even the most sluggish of days. Stream the whole thing below.
Supreme Blue Dream is out now. Buy it here, via Bandcamp