Houston-based Chase DeMaster loves wordplay. As the brains behind the unconventional electronic band Children of Pop, DeMaster also performs for Guess Genes, Deep Cuts, Kult Dizney and Get a Life while managing his own indie record label, Very Jazzed.
This weekend, Children of Pop wrapped a national tour with a final stop at White Oak Music Hall to celebrate the release of the brand-new 7” single, Poids / Étude en Cours—two tracks defined by their names.
“Poids is French for weight and ‘Étude en Cours’ for ‘study in progress,’” DeMaster tells Houstonia. “‘Poids’ is an actual song and the title is a reflection on the lyrical theme. ‘Étude en Cours’ is more of a meta track, something I was working on almost didactically as an exercise in some different approaches to production.”
The result experiments with the Berlin-industrial genre but retains a softer appeal with DeMaster’s captivating voice. Both are moody listens, with gritty and distorted electronic scratches punctuating the breathy vocals. “Étude en Cours” is still the more far-out track as it combines club beats with elements of noise music. “I’m just riding the wave and following my ear,” DeMaster says.
It goes without saying this is a departure from an earlier style. Children of Pop started its career with releases like the EP Pre Madonna that paid homage to the pop icon with cheery, synth-heavy tracks such as “Jealous Lover.” But with this 2017 release, industrial sounds reign and the track titles are in French. It proves that pop artists don't need to be singular.
Children of Pop plans to release a new record by the end of this year, and DeMaster says he hopes to continue to grow the Very Jazzed label—an eclectic mix of artists focused on being distinctive.
“From the jump, I have been focused on breaking artists on the national level,” he says. “Artistically we are trusting our intuition by taking more chances and widening the scope of what we get behind. Our motto remains to be intentionally rare and beautiful."
Chase DeMaster’s other gig Get a Life is set to open for Post Animal on Monday, July 17 at White Oak Musical Hall. More info at whiteoakmusichall.com.