The LA-based musician and producer Rusty Santos has been working with Animal Collective ever since Sung Tongs, and he mixed Panda Bear’s solo album Person Pitch. Santos also makes music on his own, and he’s announced plans to follow his 2022 solo album High Reality with a new one called New Wave In California this summer. On his latest single, Santos teams up with his old collaborator Panda Bear.
Rusty Santos and Panda Bear share vocals on the new track “Mirror,” and they also wrote the lyrics together. On the track, Santos and Panda both sing about moments of personal revelation through layers of reverb. It’s a gentle psychedelic pop track with a beat that at least nods in the direction of hip-hop. Here’s what Santos says about it:
This song is about a conversation between the mind and the higher self. I wanted Noah Lennox (Panda Bear) to sing on it, and he wrote his own lyrics for his verses, which cemented the concept. One voice is the higher self, and the other is the lower, representing an internal conversation. The instrumental centers on a guitar sample by Main Key, and Soldado contributes the whistle hook that completes the vibe.
“Mirror” is the second single that Rusty Santos has shared from New Wave In California. The first, “Halo Dive,” is a collaboration with the electro-pop singer Jackie Mendoza. Below, listen to “Mirror” and “Halo Dive” and check out the album’s tracklist.
02 “Mirror” (Feat. Panda Bear)
03 “Smile Song”
04 “Halo Dive” (Feat. Jackie Mendoza)
06 “Heaven For Now” (Feat. Psychic Twin)
07 “Rule Of Three”
08 “Star In The Sky”
10 “Juicy Lambo”
The self-released New Wave In California is out 7/14.