Audio Mixer: Aus.
Recording information: IMA.
Dream pop vocalist Cuushe has been somewhat of a breakout star for the always-intriguing Japanese label flau, following up her excellent 2009 debut Red Rocket Telepathy with a series of international collaborations and tours with Julianna Barwick and Grouper. 2013 follow-up Butterfly Case was significantly brighter and more uptempo than Red Rocket Telepathy, but still featured that album's experimental production and airy vocals. The Night Lines EP, produced by longtime collaborator aus, finds Cuushe coming closer to Purity Ring-style futuristic electronic pop, with slightly trap-influenced beats complementing Cuushe's sweet and sensual yet melancholy vocals on opener "Tie." "Shadow" begins with lightly funky guitar lines, and builds up a relaxed dance rhythm along with crunchy electronic textures and longing vocals. Most stunning is "We Can't Stop," which comes closest to the airy, downcast electronic pop of her debut, but adds ethereal guitar and ticking hi-hats to her gorgeous vocals repeating the persistent title phrase. Of the three artists contributing remixes to the EP's CD version, Nite Jewel seems to be more of a kindred spirit; her dubby, laid-back synth pop take on "Shadow" is a natural fit for Cuushe's sound. ~ Paul Simpson