Araya Flexes His Limitless Versatility on “Favorite Sin” and “Dancer”

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Truth be told, I originally began writing this article with the sole intent of covering "Favorite Sin," a brash, emotive, genre-bending tour de force courtesy of Araya. However, within that time, the Brooklyn-based, Thai-Chilean artist dropped "Dancer," a hushed club banger. So what does that leave me to do beyond rave about both of them?

"Favorite Sin" follows in the same sprawling blueprint of artists like Jean Dawson, blurring the line between dynamic alternative breakdowns, experimental pop detours, and divulgences that seem to be scrambling over one another to come to light. It starts unassuming enough, opening on a series of background chatter, a delicate guitar line, and Araya's soothing voice, which carries with it a tinge of wistful R&B.

This, of course, soon gives way to a thundering shift, signaled by the sonic equivalent of being thrown headfirst into a mosh pit surging forth with an unbridled pathos. It's a welcome changeup that sees Araya fully in his element, dripping with a peerless bravado only matched by his guttural howls that seem equally as directed outward as they are inward.  

On the other side of the coin, we have "Dancer," released via Kitsuné Musique, produced by Jack Marlow, and featuring ultimidly. "Dancer" is everything you would come to expect from an underground club hit. Vocals float in and out over frenetic hi-hats and steady, driving production that slows down and picks up at a moment's notice. The unpredictability of the dynamic undercurrent mimics the intoxicating nature of losing yourself in the club, watching midnight slowly drift into 4 a.m.

Taken together, "Favorite Sin" and "Dancer" are a continued testament to a new generation of artists freed of genre conventions and fitting into neat, sellable mold. Araya is an artist you can turn to if you need to lose yourself in the club one moment only to throw yourself into an experimental pop mosh pit the next.

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