ASHS’ “Paranoid” Sets the Stage for Her Dark Pop Takeover

Alyssa Reid, better known as ASHS, has returned to the 2019 music scene with her most experimental and forward-pushing track thus far, “Paranoid.” Spending much of the year contributing as a writer for tracks such as bülow’s “Not A Love Song” and Virginia to Vegas’ “Selfish,” the rising artist delivers something entirely her own. 

Her newest release comes in at roughly three minutes in length and features several elements from distinct genres all over the landscape of contemporary music. Released through Wax Records, a subgroup of Universal Music Canada, the track is a dive into a new dark reality for the pop songstress. The hypnotic undertones of the single are dark and elusive, crafting a powerful single to send 2019 towards its end.

The track opens up with nothing more than a few gentle guitar notes, quickly welcomed are the layered vocals of ASHS, mixed to sound nearly robotic. Soon after, the track unfurls the entirety of its production, the track becomes a smooth and bouncy combination of hip hop and electropop. The vocal layers on the track are the most impressive element as the robotic and mysterious sounds of the harmonies capture the track’s underlying themes of mystery and thrill. 

As the single enters its latter half, the production becomes all the more grandiose and dramatic, crafting a hectic yet smooth take on electropop. Approaching its close, the production once again thins out to feature a few piano keys and gentle ambient synths as ASHS’ vocals send the track into sudden silence. The line does not even finish as she echoes, “I’m not paranoid I’m just…,” once again reinforcing the track’s mysterious nature. 

Overall, the track brings forward a message of not being sure who one can really trust. ASHS begins to question who her friends are becoming, the concept of being aware, and recognizing lies. ASHS explains that “‘Paranoid’ gives an audible sneak peek into my subconscious.” She echoes in the chorus, “The truth is that if you did / You would be here, but you’re not here,” before falling into a climax of heavy production and dramatic vocal layers.

ASHS’ return is an exciting one and the nature of “Paranoid” broadcasts the direction she hopes to take her music moving forward. With concise songwriting and the production to match, “Paranoid” is a strong single that most definitely sets the tone for ASHS moving into the new year.

Listen to “Paranoid” below:

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