Luther Monroe delivers a sound, production ethic, and aesthetic that is tightly executed. His music releases are effectively releases you eagerly await and appreciate. You’re getting authentic, superbly executed electronic music that covers anything from retro styles to drum and bass, trap, UK garage, afrobeat, downtempo, tech house, and everything in between. Moreover, you get catchy songs, top production, and flawless vocal performances when required. In fact, Munroe’s production and songwriting skills surpass many of the more emblazoned artists who often flounder in today’s musical landscape, for lack of good relatable material. With his first album “State of the Art” raking in the accolades, and his second album set to release mid-2023, already in the works, Luther Monroe takes a slight detour to release a 1980’s electronic style re-imagined version of “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”, entitled “Stranger Christmas”.
This synthwave project is a love letter to the ‘80s delivered with due diligence and passionate authenticity. “All composition and all instrumentation are original MIDI programming, and nothing herein has been sourced from any 3rd party audio origins,” explains Luther Monroe. “For retro authenticity, some of the layers contain sound that has been generated by Commodore 64 and Atari emulators. The main beat is loosely based on popular songs previously released by Fine Young Cannibals and Cameo in the 1980s,” he concludes.
If you have any firsthand knowledge of the legendary Commodore 64 and Atari computer systems, then you may have revealed your age. However, you will certainly be able to appreciate what Luther Monroe has done production wise with “Stranger Christmas”. If those aforementioned systems are just hearsay to you, the appreciation difference will be minimal and you will still adore Monroe’s work, if you have an affection for retro stylings.
Having said that, none of the above-cited criteria is essential in thoroughly enjoying “Stranger Christmas”. It is simply an enjoyable, upbeat piece of electronic music, regardless of its compositional and production legacies. Furthermore, if you disregard the title, this could be played any time of the year when you’re in absolute need of lifting your spirits.
Best known for his work on the multifaceted project “State of the Art”, Luther Monroe has found a new inspiration for his densely layered compositions by combining ‘80s pop sensibilities with a host of other creative ideas, ranging from classic synthwave to festive season flavorings. The result is an immersive audio experience infused with imaginative synths, a throbbing bouncy beat and effervescent atmosphere.
In addition to creating an instrumental holiday song, based on legendary sonic stylings, Luther Monroe has also brought his distinctive flair to the table. While Monroe’s proficiency with production and arrangement can’t be argued, his way with melody and mood maintain the same high-level parameters. Just a couple of spins of “Stranger Christmas” will have you fervently dancing around the Christmas tree.
“Stranger Christmas” is a real sonic treat that is also sure to bring people back to that bygone decade of glitz and glam. In a nutshell, Luther Monroe has achieved everything he set out to do with this single.