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TARN PK - SugarCoated - EP REVIEW



Wellington, New Zealand

5 songs of electro-pop, hyperpop anthemic alchemy anyone? Let’s listen to Tarn PK’s latest EP ‘SugarCoated’!

Moving away from the stripped-back sounds of his previous works, Tarn PK has raised his attention to lifting the energy of his current release, heading more in the line of infectious pop anthems with undeniable catchiness.

Using similar instrumentation throughout is something that Tarn PK has done throughout to maintain his skillset and continuity but with fresh sounds each takes. The imperfection of bedroom recording is something that has been used to the advantage of the artist rather than as a hindrance. Making it clear that distortion has been used and magnified purposefully is something that this artist aims to shine clarity on.

The EP opens with ‘Blunt Force Trauma’ and well oh well! A classic hyperpop feel intertwines itself with elements of dream pop and trap soul to create a universe of bubbly synths, trap percussion loops and panned autotuned vocals. Although the words aren’t 100% clear, it’s super effective. Certain words stand out where needed and the futuristic elements of this piece are immaculate. There’s a clear slice down the track during its final third, giving listeners another sound to play with! As far as opening songs go, this is a solid introduction to what this style of Tarn PK’s artistry entails.

‘Fever Dream’ continues to bring the energetics of hyperpop through the use of heavily autotuned vocals and emo rap-style vocals. A very Post Malone feel to this song in the way of rock pop meets autotune delay. I love the futurism that embeds itself within this one and the way that the electronic bass weaves in and out of the mix. Another strong production.

‘Simple Love’ keeps in the same direction as the previous song but offers listeners a very modern ‘Justin Beiber’ feel in its mix of higher-pitched transitions and R&B influences. The kicks stand out, the messiness doesn’t spoil the production value, it adds another dimension to the song. I like the way that the track is stripped down for a couple of bars as it leaves enough space to hear the vocal content for its true skill independently.

‘Petty’ brings distorted hyperpop synth guitar to the forefront of its melody along with twee fillers to lift the fun to new heights. The vocals again, autotuned – the hook has an emo pop rock element to its arrangement along with layered vocals and easy-to-grasp lyrics. This is a song that will have listeners all over the globe vibing with its contagious energy and infectious execution. The mix between futuristic dream pop and rock works wonders!

‘SugarCoated’ is a song that is received as a more messier production with experimental offbeats and melodics that don’t necessarily sit easily on the listener’s ears – but the value in this song is found in its lyrics and the transition that comes out of the original verse. Keep listening to this song, it gets better and better! The lyrics talk of the nature of sugar-coating life, from the masks that we wear in society both in reality and on social media.

In summary, this is a solid EP from Tarn PK – I’ve definitely got a newfound lenience towards hyperpop lately and this project has enhanced that. The five songs of ‘SugarCoated’ are not to be missed and neither is the rise of Tarn PK. So, make sure that you check this out!


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