New York -based solo project Cigar Cigarette, aka producer, sound engineer, and multi-instrumentalist Chris McLaughlin, has dropped his new single “Pantomime ft. Naeem“, and its accompanying video.
The track, “a postmodern club anthem about living in an infinite loop, unanchored in time”, features on his debut EP, Natural History, out now via Trash Casual Records. Get it here
“Pantomime”, is an absurdist meditation on the unkept promises of late stage capitalism, on going through the motions of life and playing house, like a sitcom with the sound muted. Cigar Cigarette explains:
“It was inspired by a 5 A.M. ride on New York City’s E train, I was looking at another passenger’s phone as they watched a sitcom that I couldn’t hear. People walked around the screen pretending to do things in their house, freezing in time while the canned laughter played out.”
Featuring genre-bending artist Naeem, the track leads the listener through the hallways of a haunted spaceship onto a dance floor of tungsten-heavy synths, capturing the nihilistic exuberance of 90s acid house.
Watch the Delaney Schenker & Christopher Carullo-directed/edited video below.
Rooted in distorted guitar amplifications (“Video Age”) and ominous synthesizer dramatics (“Guilty Pleasures”), the songs on Cigar Cigar Cigar Cigarette are seething with anxiety and urgency. McLaughlin’s project may serve as a respite amid the chaos, but his ethos remains generous as his production work
In addition to making his own music,McLaughlin is an in-demand engineer, having worked on Kanye West’s Sunday Service albums, as well as records by Naeem, Bon Iver, Fabrizio Moretti of The Strokes, Antibalas and more.
Photo credit: Shana Sarett