Queensyze proves why she's underground royalty

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      A Girl Wants EP (Leap4rog)

      The ability to sound simultaneously raw and polished is a rare skill. Vancouver producer Queensyze makes it look easy.

      A staple of the local underground scene, Queensyze—or Jennifer Roworth, to her friends—wears many hats, including composing original music for film, remixing for video games, and filling floors as a DJ by playing her own electronic tracks. All three elements help compose her latest EP, A Girl Wants.

      Opening the record with a driving four-on-the-floor kick drum, light hi-hats, and a siren-esque synth, the title track builds rapidly and kicks up a gear as the five-note descending bass riff explodes into the song. A composition that wouldn’t seem out of place in a peak-time set at an international festival, “A Girl Wants” is propelled by dark bass frequencies and artfully echoed vocal samples, banging out a relentless dance-floor-packing rhythm.

      “Forget About Him” cools the mood while maintaining the same tempo, combining soft minor pads with a simple house beat. With the lead synth sound recalling much of the music popular on live Twitch streams, the track highlights Queensyze’s aptitude for writing for video games, while still maintaining a strong after-hours club vibe.

      The final song, “A Good Time”, is both punchy and ambient, marrying expansive washes of sound with aggressive snare hits, and a rich, acid-tinged melody. The most underground-sounding of the trio, “A Good Time” is a rolling and powerful composition that steers listeners with strikingly placed spoken vocals, entering the same terrain as her career-highlight hit “Gotta Get Up”, which broke the Top 10 on Traxsource.

      On the strength of this EP, she might well do it again.

      Follow Kate Wilson on Twitter @KateWilsonSays