Bishop Ivy’s new EP, parasocial, explores loss and loneliness through the lens of glossy electronic pop.
Imagine if the two Justins (Bieber, Timberlake) got their hearts broken, teamed up, and went on a Shlohmo binge; parasocial resembles the fruits of that hypothetical collaboration. Digitized drums boom, pulses of bass worm their way beneath darkly sleek synths, and Bishop croons into the void, trying to process a relationship’s painful end. “CAN’T IMAGINE” finds Bishop “Sleeping on the train/In the Monday morning rain/Drifting in and out of dreams,” wandering around alone, a frown on his face, while a menacing trip-hop instrumental buzzes and clangs in the background. Despite the sorrowful subject matter and the queasy sonics, Bishop expresses a sense of, if not optimism, resolve, at least, at one point singing, “I don’t recognize the fire/That was set alight inside/How could I not want my life?”, and ending the song on a small, but powerful, note of comfort: “I’ll be my shelter in the dark/Thinking when I brush my teeth/It’s not so bad what I see/Staring back at me.” When all you have is yourself, becoming ok with that fact can be the first step toward lighter days.