State of Emergency is a Kuala Lampur based electro / trip hop act led by singer and producer Diane Marximo. Red Flag isn’t what you’d expect sonically with such an upfront name, but it’s a very sophisticated but socially pertinent listen.
Marximo sums up the track rather beautifully herself: ‘Think Massive Attack meets Air and them getting mixed up with the Thievery Corporation.” That rather undersells the rich and textured feel to the arrangement though, as well as the lyrics which are powerful and politicised. The track opens with a funky Clyde Stubblefield style drum loop, but as the strings glide in, it takes an unexpected but pleasant turn. The vocals at times have a hushed tone to them, at others smooth and infused with a delicate but determined air, creating a luscious few minutes of conscious soul-infused electronica.
As for the inspiration behind the track, Marximo had this to say: ‘Red-flagging today’s unfolding, dismaying state of affairs caused by abhorrent greed and ignorance that creeps up on us as well as isolates us from reality.’