Helen Culver and Liam Alexander have teamed up for Culver’s second EP, “Tricks Are For Kids,” and it does not disappoint. A dreamy yet dark EP with glitchy beats and sharp synths, Culver and Alexander embarked on yet another sonic-filled adventure and conjured up four alternative pop songs. Lyrically, the songs are set within the realms of female empowerment whilst exploring different versions of what it truly means.
Helen Culver’s EP “Tricks Are For Kids” Explores All Sides of Love and Sex
Stranger is the lead single, featuring disorted synths and driving beats. “You’re a stranger to me, getting stranger every day,” she sings. “Then you always find me to tell me I’m the one that got away.” It’s a powerful track in which Helen Culver defies an ex-lover who can’t seem to let go – despite his current relationship. She can’t help but also take a stab at the ex’s current relationship, calling the new girlfriend oblivious to the signs of his conflicting emotions.
Here to Use You is one of the more captivating tracks. Featuring a creepy piano that emphasizes the dark, throbbing bass and offsetting synths, Culver sings about meeting somebody and only wanting them for the night. “We’ll only be passing ships in the night,” she explains to her one-night-stand, warning them not to get to involved. “I’m here to use you, don’t take it personally, ‘cause you’re easy.” The song keeps you on your toes as it fizzles out with the piano and soaring synths.
Helen Culver Lets Us In On The Secret
Secret is more of an upbeat pop song. A tale of two lovers, Culver sings about the secrecy that must remain, however hard it is for her lover to stay quiet about it. The story takes a twist, however, when she admits to wanting a more public relationship as well. “Would it help if I told you that I’m waiting for you?” she purrs, admitting that her feelings mirror her lover’s.
It’s a switch from the previous two songs, but it does not feel misplaced. In fact, it feels like a continuation from Here to Use You – but instead of ending their relationship after the night as planned, they cannot let go.
Tricks Are For Kids is the final and longest track, but never do you feel bored or wishing it was over. Featuring high, angelic vocals and sweeping synths and strings, you will find yourself entranced by the tranquil atmosphere. About the electrical surge between two people and how their hearts stopped when they realized their feelings were mutual, it is a sweet closer to the album.
Tricks Are For Kids is a strong EP. Though the reverb can be too strong and distract from the story, Culver and Alexander are on the right track with their dream pop vision. We look forward to hearing what comes next.