Since the end of last year, lo-fi pop producer STVN has been intermittently dropping, blessing us every couple of months with chilled out earworms about love, surface attractions, and everything in between. STVN seemed to go out of his way in his earlier releases (2019’s Heartstrings for example) to highlight the power of collaboration, featuring guests like Jenna Carlie and Thomas Ng. As fantastic as the diversity of voices on STVN’s preliminary output was, it is quite exciting to hear him bringing his voice to the forefront on this EP; his silky vocals carry the whole thing, no feature needed.
The five songs go by in less than a quarter of an hour, but they travel a considerable distance stylistically. STVN takes us from the foot-tapping-finger-snapping title track through the danceable “Remedy,” neo-swing loveliness on “Weightless,” to the slightly more sober “The Current,” and finally back down to “Reality.” The beats on this EP are just as sweet as its album art, and perhaps more colorful.
Though the songs aren’t burdened by a concrete narrative, when coupled, they tell the story of a relationship’s beginning. Sugar High calls to mind the euphoria of newfound affection, of a chance encounter that leads to a stranger becoming your number one priority, and the apparent answer to all problems. STVN hints all throughout the album that this sort of thing doesn’t last forever, but for a fleeting moment, he seems happy to bask in the glow.