News, Reviews

Ela Minus Releases New Single & Video “COMBAT”

June 5, 2024
Credit: Alvaro Arisó

Ela Minus
Returns with “COMBAT”
Single + video out now

 Colombian producer and singer Ela Minus releases a new single, the immersive and gorgeous “COMBAT,” presenting a theme of strength and defiant energy. Known for creating her own synthesizers and her work with analog machines in the electronic realm, “COMBAT” features a quartet of woodwinds, marking the first time she has written and recorded with acoustic instruments. It sounds unlike anything Minus has ever created. “COMBAT” is accompanied by a video directed by Losmose.
With celestial synths and seraphic woodwinds evoking both classic techno and New Age revivalism, “COMBAT” feels like a symphony of one. “Los pájaros nacidos en jaula/no le tenemos miedo a nada,” Minus sings at the start, referencing a popular proverb about how birds born in a cage grow to consider flying a sickness. But Minus turns that phrase on its head, declaring that, in her view, those birds are actually fearless. Her soft voice moves through these long tones with a balletic grace, juxtaposing the airy sound of the instrumental and the aggressiveness of her lyrics: “No parar hasta quemarlo todo” (“keep going until it’s all burned down”).

“The foundation of ‘COMBAT’ comes from a recorded performance I did a few years ago. It was then that I improvised the chord progression that became the soul of the song. Jesse Scheinin did a beautiful performance of the woodwinds I wrote for it.” Minus elaborates, “It’s about the intensity of feelings and emotions that it hopefully evokes. You come out the other end of the struggle stronger. I hope the music speaks for itself.”
The “COMBAT” video begins in a large minimalistic space of enveloping light and kaleidoscopic shapes evoking an anechoic chamber. The camera pulls out to Minus singing, before slowly moving closer and closer, entering her chest and unveiling her beating heart. Her breath, her voice, the music, and the space become a meditation, as Minus both literally and sonically opens her heart to the listener.

With the delicate harmonies soaring with the robust electronica that gently sculpts the very passionate and atmospherical creation, the lyrics whilst resonating a fragile essence mirror a powerful stance. Ela has this infectious ability to bring raw harmonies and intimacy to such moving landscapes, the range is stunning.

“COMBAT” is Minus’ first new music following the release of her debut album, 2020’s acts of rebellion, which “[revealed] Ela’s promise as an artist—her capacity to create gritty, layered textures, to claim her voice as powerful, and to conjure immersive inner worlds, all while reminding us to dance” (Pitchfork), and 2022’s collaborative♡ EP with DJ Python, hailed for its “effortless poignance” in Stereogum’s Best of Electronic Music 2022.

This summer, Minus marks this beginning of a new chapter in her career with live performances at MUTEK in Montreal and Sónar in Barcelona. Additionally, At Sónar+D, she’ll be joined by Albert Estruch of Barcelona creative studio Querida and moderator Philip Sherburne for an exclusive conversation that explores the intersections between the worlds of music and visual art, and how these two disciplines are increasingly intertwined. Minus is working closely with Querida on an overarching visual concept to complement her new soundscapes.

Upcoming live dates

Sat June 8th – Bude, Cornwall, UK @ The Wyldes *
Fri June 14th – Barcelona, ES @ Sónar
Fri June 28th – Halifax, UK @ The Piece Hall *

Sat Aug 10th – Finsbury Park, UK – Four Tet All Dayer (DJ Set)
Thu Aug 22nd – Montreal, QC @ MUTEK Montreal

* supporting Underworld

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