Blouse, the Band from Portland, Is Coming for Your Attention

Charlie Hilton captivates with her sexy vocals and modern-day Nico-like appearance

By , Columnist

After their rave SXSW show, the buzz began to build for the Portland, Oregon dream-pop band simply named Blouse. Headed by Charlie Hilton, who is a modern day Nico look-alike with a distinctively dreamy voice to match her sexy looks, this three-piece band has all the classic sounds of synth-oriented ‘80s pop down to a structured science. And with enviable results too.

To call Blouse a retro band with all the right stuff is to ignore the art of taking popular music and infusing it with new things to make it stand out further, make it pop off the record and into your consciousness where it’s supposed to stay (if it has done its job).

Blouse.jpgWith a full-length, self-titled album already in circulation since late 2011, Blouse has set the stage for a good future. The album is loaded. Ten songs in a span of about a half hour brings back a magic of the past that relied on awesome content, not so much the cram of many half-assed tracks that seem to permeate so many albums these days. Quality is the reason we fall in love with music, not quantity.

If you like any of the synth-pop from the ‘80s, then you’ll be immediately intrigued by this fresh band that takes a familiar sound and reshapes it into a twangy, ethereal gorgeousness.

The eponymous debut from Blouse contains contagious gems like “Into Black” (check out their stunning video for the song at the end of this piece), “Videotapes,” the perfection of “White,” and the quirky “Time Travel” with the interesting lyrics. You can stream the entire album below, thanks to the band and SoundCloud.

If ‘80s-styled pop — a little on the dark side — sounds like something you might be interested in, I highly encourage you to investigate Blouse. The name might be a generic oddity, but their music is memorable, deserving of a place in your playlist, or your library, or whatever it is that you use to listen to your music these days.

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Matt Rowe began his life with an AM radio, listening to anything that was considered music. Since, he has labored intently to build a collection of music, paring it down, rebuilding, and refining as he sees fit. His decided goal is to keep up with new music by panning for the nuggets among literal mountains…

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