With a signature sound defined by shimmering textures, honeyed vocals and hooks galore, soulful lyrics, layered arrangements and propulsive beats - Emerger delivers pristine pop gems, polished to perfection.
Emerger is the musical fusion of two bandmates and life mates - lead vocalist/pianist Emma de Goede and producer/multi-instrumentalist Gerry Matthee - who met in high school and studied side-by-side working toward music degrees at the University of Cape Town.
While at university, Emerger was formed, as was their unique musical approach that is informed by De Goede’s jazz training, Matthee’s classical composition studies, and a deep and abiding love of cinematic landscapes, catchy, emotion-drenched melodies and punchy beats.
De Goede’s crystalline vocals are at once intimate and soaring, floating across bouncing grooves and fat, 80s/90s-inspired synth textures rounded out by Matthee’s tasteful and meticulously constructed guitar and bass parts and highly refined production chops.
Emerger’s self-produced debut mini album “Bloom” (2018) received international acclaim, with their first single “Break & Fall” selected from nearly 5000 entrants as winner of the Avid and Abbey Road Song Contest. Since then, the group has been showcased multiple times by BBC Introducing and BBC Radio 6 Music, featured in Apple Music’s New Artist Spotlight (including its “Best Of” playlist) and included in various official Spotify playlists (including “New Music Fridays South Africa”, “Feel Good Look Good” and “SAlt”). Emerger used the pause of the global pandemic to pour their efforts into creating new music and building out SoundBorough Studios, their full-service recording facility.
While the duo has its sights on extending their reach to a wide global audience, they make no secret of the fact that they derive tremendous inspiration from the natural beauty of their native city. “Cape Town is such a unique and visually astounding place,” says De Goede, “We’re tucked between two oceans, with the incredible Table Mountain rising from the sea. So often we’ll be driving around and we will catch a view that takes our breath away and we say ‘that would look so amazing through a lens.’ There’s no question that the epic beauty of our region affects what we feel, how we write, and the choices we make with our music.”
Beyond the inspiration they derive from their homeland, Emerger draws inspiration from the power music has to tell stories and make human connections. “It’s tremendously gratifying to make something from nothing, to sculpt these musical expressions together and create a body of work,” says Matthee, “but there’s nothing like the feeling of having, say, fans from the United States commenting about how much they love our videos on YouTube, or having a Chinese girl who lives in London cover one of our tunes. It’s just so rewarding to know so many people around the world are discovering us and enjoying what we do.”
The duo has a dynamic live show and frequently perform with a full band, making their layered productions come to life on stage in exciting ways. Most notably, they’ve played main stage at Up The Creek Festival and The Ticket Pro Dome for MediaTech Africa. They’ve played numerous venues across South Africa and have opened for some of SA’s biggest acts including GoodLuck. During lockdown they performed to their biggest audience to date as part of a livestream show hosted by BandsInTown and Twitch, with +-10,500 audience members tuning in from across the globe.
Their first single of the year, “Aeroplane Park”, releases on 6 May 2022. Drenched in 90s synth-pop nostalgia, the song reflects on their childhood, growing up in the late 90s and falling in love while still in school. The title refers to the aeroplane-shaped jungle gym opposite Emma's childhood home, where she "had her first kiss," as heard in the song’s hook.
For Emerger, 2022 is poised to be a breakout year, with a slate of releases and performances on tap to slake the thirst of their ever-growing international fanbase as the duo continues to refine their irresistible sound.