Synth-pop artist Roubix, who started his career in 2011, is still something of an enigma in the underground music business. Owned by two record companies, his identity has never been confirmed. The artist who performs live and records his music between Stockholm, Sweden and London, had a stint in the United Kingdom selections for 2014 Eurovision contest, and will apparently again be up for representing the UK in Eurovision 2018 in Lisbon, Portugal with his brand new song “Girls”.
Roubix’s sound has expanded its horizons. That audible love of the 80s is still present, but the synths are bolstered by the steady pulse of the electro music that held sway in New York clubs between the decline of disco and the rise of house, as well as luscious pop textures drawn from a couple of this decade’s more off-kilter hits.
But the real surprise is how unforced it all feels. The whole thing seems lithe and supple. It sounds airy and confident and effortless, a state of affairs aided by the fact that, Roubix seems to have hit on a new knack of coming up with a song that somehow sounds as if it has always existed, as if you’ve stumbled on an old hit that you’d forgotten about but are delighted to be reminded of.
It’ a winning formula. Impeccably capable of not only showcasing very apparent musical influences; but establishing a very distinctive sound in spite of it.
“Girls” sublimely mixes the old with the new – crisp hooks and ‘80s synths with a deeper emotional edge and penchant for the unexpected, lyrically. There’s allusive slithers and tongue in cheek hedonism – well it’s not exactly a subtle title, is it? You know where it’s going from the start, or do you?
There’s also confidence in Roubix’s robotic-styled voice and lyrics that implies a newfound strength. The track doesn’t rely on extravagant motifs or flamboyant chants. There’s a notable evolution here, and we see Roubix strive for something you can sink your teeth into over the course of a few days, weeks, month, rather than something you can insufflate at a club in the space of a few minutes.
Synth-pop is back, and very much a la mode – particularly amongst the Brits, and Roubix fits nicely into the slipstream, as he brings all the best parts of shameless synth-pop into the 21st century. Don’t bother listing him as an “artist to watch” – if all goes well with the projects he has lined up for 2018, we will see him garner exposure to the point that he becomes unavoidable.