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Premiere: Royal Yellow & SENU have started something special on ‘Aruba’

Premiere: Royal Yellow & SENU have started something special on ‘Aruba’


Royal Yellow is the new project of Mark O’Brien, formerly of Enemies.

Last year O’Brien released his debut single ‘Hazeldene‘, a real gem of a track that flew a little under the radar.

Today, we’re premiering the project’s second single ‘Aruba’.

Spiritually, ‘Aruba’ picks up where ‘Hazeldene’ left off. O’Brien alternates lush vintage sounds, like the wind/strings samples in song’s chorus, with swung hip-hop grooves in the verse sections. Sweet played against hot.

The same contrast is spun out in O’Brien’s vocal delivery. At first taut and tense, gradually becoming softer and sweeter. By the time the chorus rolls around O’Brien’s soprano delivery is almost whispered, lingering in the high end of the mix.

It’s between these two worlds, gramophone nostalgia and lo-fi hip-hop, that Royal Yellow’s music thrives.

The production, handled by SENU, brings O’Brien’s vision to reality. This track marks the first in a run of collaboration between the pair.

‘Aruba’ is a little less strict in its form and measure than ‘Hazeldene’ was. Coming in at over 4 minutes, ‘Aruba’ has enough time to breathe, swelling and compressing as the song unfolds. It’s some of the more imaginative and creative songwriting we’ve heard emerge from Ireland recently.

Royal Yellow is set to perform with SENU at the Grand Social on March 15th. Tickets, at €15+, are on sale now here.