We could stick to the facts, and they’d surely be intriguing enough to prompt you to listen to Zaritza. We could tell you about her origins: how she was born in a remote Russian village and emigrated to the United States to follow her musical dreams. We could tell you about her training and musical background – her engagement with Russian composers and European electronic producers, her training in classical piano, traditional folk dance and ballet, and enthusiasm for modern pop. We could share her varied accomplishments, including her opening date for the Trans-Siberian Orchestra, her TED Talk on the subject of Rachmaninoff, and her acclaimed self-titled 2017 album. Or we could tell you that “Zaritza” blends two Russian words: “zarya” meaning the intense bright light appearing before the sunrise or sunset, and “tsaritza” translating as queen.
But none of that would do justice to the aura of mystery and sophistication that hangs around Zaritza. Her music, her videos, her persona, her presence: they’re all unusual, deeply sensual, strikingly exotic, mesmerizing as a hypnotist’s watch. To understand Zaritza, it’s necessary to immerse yourself in her music – and once you do, you’re unlikely ever to forget the experience. With its whispering synthesizers and slinky, propulsive beats, “Slot Machine,” her latest single, might be the most intoxicating thing she’s ever cut. It’s modern pop, for sure, but it’s dream-drunk and darkly erotic, and it’s graced by a siren’s call of a lead vocal. As she always does, she’s applied everything she’s learned about composition and song structure to her distinctive version of electronic pop, and she’s reaped artistic dividends.
“Slot Machine” is also a statement of self-affirmation from a woman who knows exactly what she wants, and who isn’t afraid to chase her physical obsessions. Devin Schiro’s racy, provocative clip underscores both Zaritza’s independence and her irresistible compulsions. Everything about this clip is sexy – the costumes, the settings, the movement, and, of course, the star herself, who spends most of the video caught between bliss and the fiercest sort of urges. Much as Zaritza’s music draws equally from the contemporary, and the classical, the choreography in the “Slot Machine” clip nods both toward the poised expressiveness of ballet and the raw passion of modern dance. The smoke that overtakes the frames midway through the clip signifies the heat of the track, and the intensity of Zaritza’s desires, and the waking reverie that occurs when lovers chase their impulses into realms unknown. With “Slot Machine”, Zaritza aims to encourage and empower female sexual confidence. She says about the track, “I believe it’s important for women to be comfortable in their own skin, to come out of their shell and feel empowered to express their sexuality, without being judged.”