New Song of the Week – TOBISONICS: “All These Things”

Tobisonics All These Things Cover Art

Tobisonics is the music project of Toby Davis, a longtime music producer, composer and writer based in Luxembourg. He’s used his creative vision and talents mixing, mastering or remixing other artists and bands’ music for some time, but more recently, has chosen to create his own solo works. For his first effort, released in December 2018, he teamed up with the theatrical, genre-bending Las Vegas-based duo Fans of Jimmy Century to re-imagine their modwave neo-noir song “Noirstar (Memories of His City)”, which he redubbed “Noirstar (Dark City Edition)”. Giving their song a cinematic synthscape treatment resulted in a dark and sexy track with a slightly menacing vibe that artfully conveys the sense of excitement, titillation and danger inherent in big city life. I wrote a review of the track, which you can read here.  Now he returns with a brand new single “All These Things“, which I’ve chosen as my New Song of the Week.

He states that the song is a bit of a departure for him, as he usually works primarily with virtual instruments and midi, whereas this one is more loop-based and more pop. He provided some background for the song and his inspiration behind it, including an admission that he’s struggled with PTSD, chronic anxiety and depression for years, and only rediscovered music in his mid 30s. “I’d played in bands as a teenager, but hadn’t picked my guitar up for over 15 years. It’s like the depression drowned out the music in me. Once I started seeing a psychiatrist and taking anti-depressants, the music just flowed. I couldn’t have stopped it, if I’d wanted to. I’ve always been pretty open about my depression and anxiety. The reasons that lie beneath, I’m not so open about. I guess that’s where the music comes in.

‘All These Things’ explores a difficult subject matter, but remains a compelling piece of
contemporary pop, painted in fiercely percussive tones and an ear-catching vocal hook. It begins as an apparently simple love song, painted in soulful tones and lo-fi beats.
The infectious chorus ‘All these things I remember’ arrives early, perhaps nostalgic for a summer love. But as the track unfolds, a darker truth emerges, one that can not be forgotten nor easily escaped: ‘Nobody can stop me, I am running’.”

Tobisonics skillfully employs a colorful kaleidoscope of sultry keyboards, mesmerizing beats and a mix of glittery and spacey looped synths to create a lush and captivating soundscape. As the track progresses, the music becomes heavier and the mood darker, culminating in a stunning crescendo of swirling string synths in the bridge. The previous beat-driven tempo then returns along with the refrain “All these things I remember”, which continues through to the song’s end.

Regarding the bewitching female vocals, which sound to me a bit like an early Madonna, Tobisonics found the right vocals he desired and looped them. Unfortunately, under the terms of their use, he was not allowed to credit the vocalist.

Connect with Tobisonics: WebsiteFacebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream his music:  SpotifyApple Music
Purchase:  Google PlayAmazon

TOBISONICS featuring FANS OF JIMMY CENTURY – Single Review: “Noirstar (Dark City Edition)”

Music producer Tobi (Toby Davis) has been using his creative vision and talents mixing, mastering or remixing other artists and bands’ music for a while now. And though he’s generally preferred to work behind the scenes in relative anonymity in the Luxembourg countryside where he resides, he’s also found it difficult to build momentum or a fan base in his own right. Consequently, he came to the realization that he needed to invent and control his own brand. In addition, he’s long thought of his collaborations as  ‘alternate versions’, rather than simply ‘remixes’, and that the term ‘remix’ did not serve him well. This has led him to create a new ‘Tobisonics’ brand as an opportunity to more properly reflect his alternate versions and the manner in which he approaches and feels about them.

For his first project as Tobisonics, he’s teamed up with the theatrical, genre-bending Las Vegas-based duo Fans of Jimmy Century to re-imagine their modwave neo-noir song “Noirstar (Memories of His City).” Fans of Jimmy Century consists of vocalist, lyricist, composer and voice-over artist Alicia Perrone & songwriter, producer and bassist Victor James. Tobisonics gives their song a cinematic synth-scape treatment, redubbed  “Noirstar (Dark City Edition)“.

Fans of Jimmy Century (2)
Fans of Jimmy Century

Living up to its title, the languid track is sexy and dark, with a slightly menacing vibe that conveys the sense of excitement, titillation and danger inherent in big city life. Starting with Victor James’s deep, pulsating bass line, Tobi recasts it as a modulated/phased sequencer bass, creating a hypnotic EDM beat over which he layers spacey, otherworldly synths. In her mysterious, sultry vocals, Alicia Perrone purrs: “Still have memories of the city. I wouldn’t wish ’em on anyone. Not anyone.” Exactly what she’s referring to isn’t clear, leaving it up to the listener to interpret as we wish. The tension gradually builds until the two-minute mark, at which point Tobi breaks down the track with eerie tribal chants and soaring synth chords. After about 20 seconds, the previous bass-driven tempo returns and continues through to the end, leaving us mesmerized by this captivating song.

Connect with Tobi:  Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Connect with Fans of Jimmy Century:  Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Download/purchase the track on  iTunes / Amazon / Google Play / Tidal