There’s anti-marketing, and then there’s what Seoul’s Della Zyr is doing. If you were to stumble across her YouTube channel, you’d find a handful of videos of a young woman playing shoegaze cover songs in her bedroom; excellently done, certainly, but not unusual in 2024. Her Instagram offers somewhat more; it’s only four posts deep, but acknowledges the release of her debut album 비타민과 우려 Vitamins And Apprehension and the follow-up EP 모호함 속의 너 Nebulous You, which came out in January and December of 2022 respectively, as well as a couple of shows that Summer.
They don’t, however, fully communicate just how good those two releases are, boasting expansive arrangements that flow from delicate acoustic fingerpicking to bludgeoningly amplified while remaining always melodic. Is it shoegaze or is it dreampop? Yes, it is. If this sounds like it could be a descriptor lifted from fellow Korean anonymous bedroom shoegazer Parannoul, well there’s definitely a RIYL here.
Both 2022 releases are worth exploring, but I prefer the EP (though at almost 40 minutes, it’s basically another album), and the opening track is a perfect introduction.
The digital liner notes for it say:
This EP is a digestion of the “vague” that we encounter in life—the unavoidable ill-defined moments that are difficult to fully grasp, rationalize, or cope with, which disprove statements like “Everything happens for a reason.” In particular, this EP explores my relationship with grief. The four tracks loosely represent denial, bargaining, depression, and acceptance, respectively.
I originally began writing this record as an abstract retrospect of the various losses that I’ve experienced in the distant past. While producing the EP in early October, I unexpectedly lost someone dear to me, and, subsequently, reworked many of the lyrics and tracklisting, morphing the record from a narrative of past events to a means of processing my ongoing emotions.Della Zyr / 모호함 속의 너 Nebulous You
And despite offering little of her identity through her own channels, Della Zyr (a name? A pseudonym? A project? Who knows) hasn’t gone so far as to actively scrub the internet of third party content. Hence, this acoustic performance at a Seoul cafe last January exists and while I have trouble relating the tracklist in the annotations with the songs on the album – not helped much by the fact that “Constellation’s Song” seems to have largely been cut from the beginning of the video – it’s still an interesting and rare look at the artist and the songs.