“Huggin & Kissin” with Big Black Delta

Tonight’s tune of choice is “Huggin & Kissin,” and comes from Los Angeles-based artist Big Black Delta, a.k.a. Jonathan Bates. I was actually cleaning my ink-jet printer, when I heard this one. Yeah, I know … not too exciting. But I’m trying to print out some old digital art, some of which I hope will feature in future renditions of this blog. Anyway, back to BBD.

Here’s the thing …

I’ve heard “Huggin & Kissin” before, and can’t remember where. It’s so familiar, but I just can’t place it. I’m not sure if it was recommended. Or I heard it in the background at work … or maybe a store. I have no idea. And of course, it’s been bugging me all day. So I figured why not work it out with this post.

So here goes …

“Huggin & Kissin” is a terrific little throwback to old school ’80s-styled new wave synth-pop. It’s got MIDI written all over it, at least in spirit, and is littered with an abundance of electro-hooks and splashy keys, all steeped in retro ambience and reverberating nostalgia. It’s reminiscent of some wonderful throwback soundtracks from contemporary film, like “Drive” or “Tron: Legacy.” And it’s got those velvet smooth new romantic vocals to boot.

I should also mention that Big Black Delta teamed up with fellow ’80s-gazing peers M83 to remix Daft Punk’s “Fall” off that latter film score, which, of course, puts him in good company.

This track also boasts a great industrial-strength steam-powered rhythm that kicks out a thick and heavy brand of sheet metal beats. It’s loaded with percussive machine gun synth stabs, all pressure punched and pounding. It’s sharp and edgy, and somehow strikes the right balance.

And there’s the fun title, full of playful not safe-for-work vibes. Although, I’d say that’s a bit of a misdirection. “Huggin & Kissin” is a certain kind of fun, bearing strange and deviant shenanigans beneath the obvious. The crazy cool music video should provide some insight.

And now that I’m watching it, that’s it!

That’s where I first heard “Huggin & Kissin.” I originally got caught up in this one due to the Aeon Flux-ish animated vibe. There was a “Heavy Metal” style astronaut (the magazine, not the music), a ’50s robot in disguise, and an alien cat fighting a super squid. It’s also got a “Stepford Wives” thing going on.

Anyway, it’s the cat that triggered the memory reboot. Of course, now I can’t remember how I stumbled on the video in the first place.

Given that, I’ll wrap it up, and head straight into Big Black Delta’s music video for “Huggin & Kissin.” Makes sense to start here. You’ll find the Spotify embed after that. Enjoy!

“Huggin & Kissin” from the 2013 album “Big Black Delta.”

I’m gonna add Big Black Delta’s “Fall” remix to this post as well. Bates collaborated with M83 for this reconfigured version of Daft Punk’s breakthrough soundtrack. And when you give it a listen, I think you’ll figure out who’s steering the mix and when.

“Fall (Remixed by M83 vs Big Black Delta)” from the 2011 remix album of Daft Punk’s original score for “Tron: Legacy Reconfigured.”