Crystal Math

Purity Ring reemerges and transcends with their third album, Womb. The Edmonton synth-pop duo of Megan James and Corin Roddick embody a bright light in an overcast world with lyrics that offer kindness during trying times.

Womb crystallizes the band’s sound with dreamscapes that build on 2015’s Another Eternity and Shrines from 2012. We hear a greater variety of vocal processing techniques and dexterity in James’ voice. With MIDI controllers, Roddick plays and composes complex, soothing arrangements. The album shows growth in the band’s unique poetic, electronic palate. 

In anticipation for this gentle monsoon of new music, they made a teaser website for “pink lightning,” channeling the early internet aesthetics of Geocities. While swaying in a storm of uncertainty, the song itself undulates with synthesizers and cascading drum machines.

Contrasting subjects delve into sadness and grief with sounds that are familiar and warm, Purity Ring cast a glow on foreboding senses of doom, as heard on “peacefall.” “Femia” is a prayer for strength and forgiveness. The album probes concepts both light and dark, in reality and fantasy, the physical and spiritual. 

This album belongs as a soundtrack to a harrowing, yet rewarding journey. They conclude with the upbeat single “stardew.” There is reassurance in the moment: “I know that seems far, but just be where you are.” Through Womb, Purity Ring delivers a wholesome and healing body of work.

Best track: “i like the devil”

Check out our interview with Purity Ring’s Megan James here.