Adron has rolled out a new single for coping with COVID-inflicted ennui. “Song About My Computer” is a lovely pop mediation on just how much of daily life is spent navigating a complicated relationship with a silicon-based companion, nemesis, and portal to the world and beyond. As with all good pop songwriting there are layers of meaning at work in the title as well as the hook, “I don’t want to write a song about my computer.”
On the surface, it’s a lighthearted ditty. Give a deeper listen, though, and the glow of melodic catharsis weighs heavily against the existential dread projected in the lyrics: “Maybe we’ll pull through / Maybe we’re all screwed.” Or as Adron says: “The song is a whimsical-pessimist take on pandemic loneliness, and how much I miss being a real-life musician, with some shouts out to LA venues I hope and pray will survive the long lapse.”
Every time I press play on the Youtube video the algorithm toggles away from “Song About My Computer” and follows up with “She Sells Sanctuary” by the Cult. I can’t help but wonder if my computer is taunting me or reciprocating Adon’s sentiments by offering its own message of solace in the nuanced barrage of 1s and 0s reflecting back at me.
Whatever the case may be, the accompanying B-side is a cover of Bruce Hornsby’s 1986 FM cheese hit “The Way It Is.” Adron’s version was originally recorded as a Christmas gift for drummer Colin Agnew (it’s one of his all-time favorite guilty pleasure songs). “The Way It Is” was produced and mixed by Adron in her bedroom in Los Angeles’ Silver Lake neighborhood, where she’s been cooped up since the beginning of the pandemic. The song features sounds derived from the AdLib Music Synthesizer Card—one of the premier pieces of software for home PCs circa 1986 through the mid ‘90s, and it shows.
“It’s my favorite digital synthesizer,” Adron says. “Obviously, since the pandemic, I’ve been on a bit of a tear, geeking out intensely on early PC game music and the sounds of that era.”
She goes on to say, “Basically, I went pretty far down the road to making an actual chiptune version of ‘The Way It Is,’ but decided to ditch authenticity—as far as what you can truly call chiptune—and sing on it and do effects processing and whatnot, because I was having too much fun.”
Back to “Song About My Computer …” This latest number was mostly recorded in her bedroom as well, all but the drums which Agnew recorded in his Adair Park home in Southwest Atlanta, where he also mixed the song. It also features a touch of the AdLib sound palette, albeit more subtly worked in.
This latest round of songs is a one-off release. Although Adron has recently finished recording a new album. When it arrives remains to be seen.
In the meantime, keep an eye/ear out here for what she likes to call the “evil twin” of “Song About My Computer”—a version of the song that’s arranged entirely using sounds derived from the late ’80s Yamaha PSS-170 toy keyboard. “This is a very dear and beloved sound palette for me,” Adron says. “I have this bizarre obsession lately with remaking a bunch of my songs using all PSS-170 samples.”
Head over to Adron’s Patreon page to check out an ongoing series of scores for imaginary video games she’s been putting together over the last year, and more offerings.
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