Tayla Parx – Coping Mechanism
Coping Mechanisms by Tayla Parx offers short bites of disco music and a mesh of lust-induced club songs along with snarky and spiteful lyrics. Fluctuating between themes and emotions, the album ranges from insolent and petty romance to quiet anger and frustration. The playlist is cyclical, structured around the music rather than lyrical storytelling. The record starts off as stripped-back pop, before exploring more experimental techno beats and then slipping back into playful and colourful realms.
The compilation opens with Sad, a somewhat relaxing number with sharp expletives cutting through. The soft bursts of backing harmonies create delicate layers to the artist’s embittered vocals. Following swiftly after is Dance Alone. The husk of Parx’s voice remains, but she adds in more style and flair, her tone fragile and childish with a seductive edge. A trail of chimes hums beneath as the track hits a soft and desperate peak in the pre-chorus. This song showcases a colourful array of instruments, following a steady thread of rhythm.
System uses the simplicity of combining production and percussion to create a techno-static effect perfectly fitting for the title. This takes the compilation into more experimental territory. Compared to the other tracks of this section, it’s a tiring and repetitive listen. An appropriate follow-up is Stare with its similar concept and composition, but with a more structured melody that highlights the singer’s stylistic range. It’s flirtatiously teasing and contrasts nicely with the dark undertones of Fixerupper. The latter has a scathing, infectious quality as its electronic vibrations fade into something more whimsical and musical, with lyrics exposing a new and careless flame.
Residue is composed of sinister strums of the guitar and verses that hum quiet frustration before slowly transcending into upbeat surrender in the chorus. The record takes a turn back into typical dance-pop with Nonchalant and Nevermind, the latter of which offers a variety of echoes from the harmonies, production and backing vocals. The rest of the playlist peters out to a disappointing end, with Last Words being only mildly suave, sassy and assertive. Though the catchy You Don’t Know channels a little bit of Kelly Rowland’s Gone, it falters as the album’s closer. Overall, despite a weak ending, the strong start keeps Coping Mechanism afloat alongside Parx’s compelling vocal aesthetic.
Coping Mechanism is released on 20th November 2020. For further information or to order the album visit Tayla Parx’s website here.
Watch the video for Residue here: