Artists You Should Know: Drift in Sunstruck Nostalgia on Pearl & The Oysters’ New Single “Konami”

pearl & the oysters
Photo by Sandy Honig

French-American outfit Pearl & The Oysters has returned with another balmy synth-pop track with the release of their latest single “Konami.” A sublime ode to white noise machines and nostalgia-charged arcade machines, the song follows the previously released “Pacific Ave.” Those who find themselves endlessly enraptured by dreamy intersections of 70’s jazz instrumentals and space-age pop soundscapes need not look further than duo Juliette Pearl Davis and Joachim Polack. Their self-titled debut album arrived back in 2017 — a sunshine-bathed collection that was to the Floridian coast what Crazy For You was to California’s, except with a barrage of synthesizers.


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On their newest single “Konami,” the duo continues to prove themselves as purveyors of nostalgia and myth. Tapping into the vibrantly overwhelming worlds of 90’s arcade that calls to mind the euphoric soundtracks of jet ski games like “Wave Shark.” Amidst synthetic blips and shimmering flourishes — not to mention a particularly mesmeric flute — the song conjures up pixelated tropical landscapes and sapphire-hued ocean waters.

The original inspiration for the song was Davis’ white noise machine, which they had used to help ease themselves through sleepless nights. It was the ebb and flow that emitted from this machine that recalled for Pearl & The Oysters another comforting sound from a bygone era: the euphonious clamor of arcade music. The song’s title alludes to both the Japanese word’s meaning (“small wave”) and the iconic video game company. Few artists know as much about synth-flourishes as Alan Palomo (a.k.a. Neon Indian), who contributed to the song’s production with what the band called his “amazing collection of analog effects. Feeling the song come alive with Alan was such a magical moment!”

pearl & the oysters
“Konami” Artwork by Ardhira Putra

The music video for “Konami,” directed and animated by Salvador Cresta, also resembles an eerie relic from the past. Resembling a retro piece of film you’d probably find playing at a karaoke bar: as purple hand-scrawled lyrics flash on the screen, animations that looked like they were made by markers fidget in the background. While the band members themselves appear as oversized cutouts emblematic of 90s television.

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If you enjoyed being whisked away by the electro-breezy melodies of “Konami,” make sure you give a listen to the similarly blissful grooves of “Pacific Ave.” And their 2022 EP Coordonnées and third album Flowerland also offer more lush soundscapes from the duo to explore!

Visit Pearl & The Oysters on their Bandcamp and Instagram to stay updated on new releases and tour announcements.

Words: Steven Ward

Watch the music video for “Konami” the new single from Pearl & The Oysters below!

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