Ears Wide Open: Magdalena Bay

Magdalena Bay (Photo by Lissyelle Laricchia)

Indie duo Magdalena Bay are L.A.-based content producers, the driving force of that content being lightweight but intoxicating pop music that seems beholden not to any specific era but finds a “Xanadu” in many.

The duo — Mica Tenenbaum and Matthew Lewin — released their debut EP, “A Little Rhythm and a Wicked Feeling,” just as the world shut down in March 2020, but showing their resilience they set about building a following on social platforms, winning followers with their DIY aesthetic and winking visuals that plumbed the past. Their YouTube channel (and now their Y2K-inspired website) feels like a class project on how to be a creative in the 2020s. (They aced it.)

Maybe they’re the next Holychild?

Anyway, this week they announced the Oct. 8 arrival of their debut album, “Mercurial World,” a totally DIY affair writing- and production-wise, via Luminelle Records.

It seeks to capture the (virtual?) zeitgeist of the past year and a half. “We spend all of our time together, and in some ways ‘Mercurial World’ is about that particular sense of madness in containment,” Lewin says. “We live together and make art together; this immerses you in our creative, insular universe.”

“Chaeri” is the album’s first sugar-rush, with the video directed by Luke Orlando. They explain the song’s intended conceptual heft:

“‘Chaeri’ muses on mental health, friendship, loneliness and control. It’s about the walls we put up and the walls we should tear down for the sake of authentic connection, and Mica’s own personal difficulties with that. We tried taking these themes and elevating them to build a big, dark world with unsettling undertones.”

||| Watch: The video for “Chaeri”

||| Also: Stream “A Little Rhythm and a Wicked Feeling”

||| Live: Magdalena Bay headlines El Cid on Oct. 8. Tickets.