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Live Review: Oscar Key Sung shatters desire with 'D.Y.T.'

26 February 2018 | 10:23 am | Kyle Fensom

Oscar Key Sung shares his intensely personal single, 'D.Y.T.', a track about carnal desire, miscommunication and the pains of longing

OSCAR KEY SUNG gives a glimpse of new material that we can expect later this year by unveiling his latest single, ‘D.Y.T.’, a carnal track driven by desire, the pains of longing, and what happens when the illusion of affection is shattered a little bit. It’s about the miscommunication between people, between their bodily and emotional desires. With little more than wobbling electric piano, some nocturnal atmospherics, a shuffling, club-inflected beat and his intangible falsetto, Oscar gives musicality to that moment in which you realise that the other person doesn’t look at you the way you look at them.

Lyrical moments of heartache fracture Oscar’s emotive vocal performance – “Maybe talk like I belong to you”, “I don’t want the truth, so lie to me”, “Don’t talk about another one / I know I’m not the only one”, “I want you to see through this / This isn’t me, this isn’t me”.  In the track’s visual companion, lo-fi, home-recorded moments of human connection and understanding juxtapose against images of quiet solitude: Oscar broods out the back window of a taxi, he watches traffic pass from overhead at night, he walks along a beach by himself at sunset, records music in his bedroom.

I’m not sure what the ambiguous abbreviation of “D.Y.T.” refers to; maybe, like Bill Murray’s line at the end of Lost in Translation, it’s something intensely personal for Oscar and is best left undefined. But maybe the problem is that Oscar himself isn’t entirely sure what the phrase means either, or even what it looks like. Much of human communication is lost in such spaces. And Oscar seems to meditate on it throughout a propulsive refrain in which he tries out varying intonations, compressing and hurrying through in some spots, drawing it out, stressing different letters and taking awkward pauses in others, but never settling on the same phrasing.

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The track is personal for Oscar in other ways, too, reflecting his experience of living between Mexico City, Berlin and Los Angeles: “The three cities brought out such different ideas in me, and each place I stayed way like a different chapter with a whole new narrative of life experience. I feel like I drank it all up and have metabolised all my experiences into work that I am now super excited to share this year.” Tipped to be sharing more new music this year, this is the first taste of what's still to come, and a very exciting taste at that!

'D.Y.T' is out now via Good Manners.

IMAGE: Supplied