Daily Dose is your daily source for the song you absolutely, positively need to hear every day. Curated by the Paste Music Team.
The man behind Mid-Air Thief, Shadow Community and Hyoo is as much of an enigma as his music. Mr. Thief, as he’s known, has no social media presence and has never performed live, not even in his home country of South Korea. But his entrancing, psych-inflected folktronica speaks for itself.
Without a speck of PR, his 2018 Mid-Air Thief record Crumbling (featuring guest vocalist Summer Soul) garnered nominations for both Album of the Year and, to Mr. Thief’s displeasure, Best Dance & Electronic Album, at the South Korean Music Awards. “When they called and said I was nominated, I asked them [to] please not to,” he told MTV News, explaining that he didn’t think his music fit the “dance” label. Crumbling is one of the most gently atmospheric and sonically ambitious albums in recent memory—but maybe that’s why it ended up winning. This year, Crumbling was re-released by Topshelf Records in the U.S., selling out almost immediately.
Mr. Thief has capped off this remarkable year by returning with two new tracks from another project, Shadow Community. “Restless Song,” which features an unnamed female guest vocalist, recalls the best of Grizzly Bear. Warm, staticky and soft, it’s a ticket to a stranger, quieter world. Swirling with spiraling vocals and unplaceable sounds, it pulses with a muffled tension just beneath the surface.
Listen to “Restless Song” and “Halcyon’s Coffin” below.