Yu Su’s Yellow River Blue is her debut LP, in which she cultivates a balanced yet dreamy sonic profile. The Vancouver-based, Kaifeng-born producer and DJ has created a meandering, shimmering composition, an ode to the Yellow River in China along which she completed her pre-pandemic tour.
There is an acoustic feel across the entire album, reflecting Yu Su’s path as a musician and her dizzying knowledge of music culture. ‘Klein’ is perhaps the most acoustic, with tumbling, downtempo drums. Her own inaudible breathy vocals are diffused across the LP, alongside tonalities that pay homage to Chinese roots. Each track has an air of tenderness. ‘Xui’ begins the album, rising like a dewy morning. Frictious electro-pop rhythms, such as those in ‘Gleam’ and ‘Melaleuca’ accent a handful of the more club-ready tracks. Then, things wind down into a billowy sleep, with ‘Melaleuca (At Night)’ culminating the album with a sleepy lullaby.
Yellow River Blue is an eclectic yet coherent composition, visionary in its expansiveness and exquisite execution. Yu Su invites us to join her at the riverside, immersing ourselves in the ebbs and flows of the waterway. It is released digitally on Yu Su’s newly launched bié Records, with a physical release via Music from Memory.
Header image: David Yen