Rafting is the synth-pop project of Columbus musician Dallin Stevenson. Last year the 24-year-old traded the indie rock band he’d been playing with since high school for a solo career crafting woozy, chillwave-adjacent electronic tracks and touring with the likes of George Clanton and FADE. He’ll join the latter on a tour through the South in January.
One recent Rafting highlight, “Loading Screen,” plays out like a hymn to a computer interface at first before revealing itself to be a resigned and perhaps disgruntled love song. Stevenson’s high-pitched whimper intones: “I cant believe/ I wait here like a loading screen/ O, to become/ A softly haunting texture in your life.” It’s like a Flaming Lips ballad produced by Oneohtrix Point Never.
Today Stevenson is back with another computerized slow drift called “World 2 Big.” It’s probably not intentional, but the song really does sound like riding a makeshift watercraft down a river; it just so happens that the river is made up of icy, burbling electronic particles and powered by a current of bleary-eyed personal anxiety. Once again, there’s a warm beating heart at the core of his frigid synthetic production: “Why do I act like I need nobody? I’m looking for love from everybody.”
Check out “World 2 Big” below, where you can also find Rafting’s upcoming tour dates with FADE.
01/17 – Nashville, TN @ Betty’s
01/19 – Atlanta, GA @ The Bakery
01/24 – Houston, TX @ TBA
01/25 – Austin, TX @ Swan Dive
“World 2 Big” is out now. Purchase it here.