“Ribbon Of Hot Plasma” EP is the latest release from North London’s Aurora Dee Raynes, featuring previous single “Something Sensible”, which received upfront support from Craig Charles (BBC 6Music). It follows their debut ‘Invisible Things’ LP and subsequent remixes from Shy One and El-B. Mapping their trajectory of maturity, growth and synergy as a band, the album gained support from the likes of Gilles Peterson, Huey Morgan, and Tom Ravenscroft (BBC 6Music), Marc Mac (4hero), Garth Trinidad and Aaron Byrd (KCRW), Clash Magazine, Bandcamp Weekly, THUMP, Stereofox, PopMatters, Fusicology, Laurent Garnier and Toshio Matsuura.
Beginning on an exploratory trajectory, focus track “Underwater Shapeshifter” plays with the youthful joy that can be found in the endless possibilities of the unknown. As the track lyrically looks back on the past, the hidden parts of our memories and questions around changing our ways, the energy and driving sub bass carries the listener through the musical waters. “We started toying with the idea that you shapeshift into a new world – you don’t mess it up. It’s dangerous and exciting. It will paint new pictures and give you new directions,” vocalist Danielle Kranendonk explains.
As the first new music since the debut LP from Aurora Dee Raynes, the “Ribbon Of Hot Plasma” EP sees the group revisit their core ethos, with the power of honest lyrics and collaborative production and instrumentation unifying and underpinning each of the tracks. Having taken the name Aurora Dee Raynes after finding the crashing of particles to create the Borealis a fitting metaphor for producer Stephen Raynes and Kranendonk crashing into each other to create music, they looked to the stars once again for the title of the project.
Stumbling upon the story of mysterious and unusual new aurora borealis (or more specifically a ribbon of hot plasma), fondly named STEVE (Strong Thermal Emission Velocity Enhancement), they knew they’d found their EP title. “It is the “highly ionised plasma consisting of large numbers of electrons and positive ions, with the temperature of both being extremely high”. It’s a little weird, it sounds great and when we said it, we both reacted instantly. It describes our energy, and it had Stephen’s name in it. A sign and a feeling born from what we decided to name ourselves,” explains Kranendonk.
On “Reading Fiction”, the metaphor of particles gathering is used to illustrate the supportiveness in people coming together and becoming more than the sum of their parts. Radiating with a sultry groove, the lyrics seek to inspire and encourage people to wear their crown and “just do you”. Fuelled by producer Stephen Raynes’s late night beat-making studio sessions and Kranendonk’s night owl tendencies, the track embodies the colliding energy of Aurora Dee Raynes. Built of gentle vocals over a subtly funky groove, “Something Sensible” explores the simple beauty that can be found in the sensible ending of a sensible relationship, choosing instead to stay in someone’s life from afar. “It’s not always about negative and hard feelings, there are layers”, Kranendonk muses. Pieced together by Raynes, the track begins with warm and earnest keys from Nicholas Johnson, which provide a cleansing backdrop for Kranendonk’s softer vocals to glide across. The funky driving force of the track comes from bassist Will Harper, consisting of thoughtful takes, reworkings and layering. Completing “Ribbon Of Hot Plasma” with final Aurora Dee Raynes touches, “Maths” comes equipped with urgent energy touching on jazz pianos, direction changes, vocal drops and varying styles that create space to groove and welcome us further into the party.