After naming them as our July 2022 Artist of the Month, we here at KUTX have gotten an awful lot of opportunities to gush about the Austin synth-goth gargantua that is Urban Heat. With a blacked-out sense of fashion and all the industrial analogue toys a bitter boy could want, Urban Heat instantly evokes an impossibly-slick sense of 1980s nihilism, perfectly primed for our pandemic era and an entire dejected generation. Of course, there’s still a ton of synth-pop beauty in the bass-and-beat-driven bleakness, as heard throughout Urban Heat’s 2022 album Wellness and the handful of singles they’ve shared since.
So, sure, the Wellness stalwart “Have You Ever” has climbed past millions of streams, but that success hasn’t slowed Urban Heat’s ascension to The Tower, out this summer. If we’d just heard this next record’s first lead single, “Like This”, we’d honestly expect much of the same from Wellness. Turns out though, that Wellness was just the foundation for The Tower, as made clear by the full-length’s second preview, “Sanitizer”.
Far from a sterile sound, “Sanitizer” oozes infectious electro elements like drastically-saturated bass tones, scalpel-sharp drums, and pitch wheel synth sirens that’ll elevate your heartbeat with what’s easily Urban Heat’s most aggressive original to date. Clearly, there’s no musical malpractice when it comes to these goth doctors…but the same can’t be said for the trio’s trauma team characters in the music video for “Sanitizer”. It’s gross. It’s hilarious. It’ll tear your heart right out. And you’d better believe Urban Heat turns the O.R. into a dance floor for their lucky pair of patients (dancers Larissa Dali and Quentin Arispe). So between Urban Heat kickoff of a tour in support of Twin Tribes tonight in Pomona and their return to Texas in early February, remember: a play of “Sanitizer” a day keeps bad music away.
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