Penelope Isles - Play It Cool (Alt Mix)

Song of the Day
Hosted by Kevin Cole

Today's Song of the Day, as chosen by DJ Kevin Cole, host of Drive Time on KEXP, is "Play It Cool (Alt Mix)" by Penelope Isles, a 2022 single on Bella Union.

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PHOTO by Parri Thomas
written by jasmine Albertson

It’s a family affair for Penelope Isles, the sibling songwriting duo of Lily and Jack Wolter, who have channeled the energy of their UK homeland the Isle of Man for some seriously dreamy sounds over the course of two records. Now based in Brighton, their latest record, 2021’s Which Way To Happy, sees the band recruit the help of Henry Nicholson, Joe Taylor, and Hannah Feenstra to fill out their expansive soundscapes for an intoxicating leap forward.

Still, a lot of those sounds aren’t exactly accurate to what the band is playing on tour which is why they decided to re-imagine a few of those songs and release them as alternate mixes. Our Song of the Day (and third from Penelope Isles) is the alternate mix of stand-out track “Play It Cool.” Slightly stripped down but no less gorgeous, bouncy, and effervescent, the song only builds excitement to see the band deliver the songs on stage. This is what they had to say about the single:

“We have been working on how to re-imagine songs from Which Way To Happy for our festival shows this summer…. Play It Cool seemed to fall into place a lot easier than others… maybe because we stripped a lot of things away that are in the album version, so we felt that it would be ‘cool’ to re-mix and create an alternative version, where the arrangement and sonics are more like how we are doing it live. Everything is pretty hard panned in the stereo mix, so the drums are on one side and the bass on the other. It’s kind of fun to pan to one side and isolate things. Inspired by those early Byrds and Beatles mixes.”

Penelope Isles is currently on tour behind Which Way To Happy but, unfortunately, currently solely in Europe and the UK. Watch their 2019 KEXP in-studio performance below while we eagerly wait for them to hop the pond.


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