Up Up and Away | “Look at the Sky” by Porter Robinson

Up Up and Away | “Look at the Sky” by Porter Robinson

Luke Adams, Host of Terminally Online

It’s been almost seven years since Porter Robinson’s last full-length LP, but that’s not to say he’s been silent. 2016 had him teaming up with Madeon for what’s become his flagship song (and video), and he spent most of 2020 harvesting a new crop of singles, teasing towards something.

But while those songs carried over some of his well-worn EDM textures, something was different. These songs sounded more like latter-day The 1975 tracks than anything we’ve heard from him previously, and a lot of them had an emotional richness that he’d only been able to channel semi-successfully to that point. Now, he’s confirmed that a new album called Nurture is on it’s way, and with that announcement comes the most astonishing song he’s ever made.

Look at the Sky” is an ascendant pop song. The whole song is built around a gut-punching chorus of:  “Look at the sky, I’m still here. I’ll be alive next year.” It’s reminiscent of The Mountain Goats’ “I am going to make it through this year if it kills me”—life-affirming but still weary, as if he’s had to earn the right to finally say that. Porter confessed that this song was written at his “lowest point emotionally” during a long stretch of writer’s block. Three years ago, he posted “I can make something good” in a last-ditch effort to hold onto his identity. Here, it sounds like the most uplifting words he’s ever spoken.



Porter’s presence on the vocals is what makes this song shine, but it’s nothing without the new sonics that he’s been tinkering with. The synth horns and arpeggio swells are spine-tingling, but the plucky acoustic passages give this song a range that wasn’t even there on the best of his early work. It’s hard to see this as anything less than the full actualization of his sound, and as it officially marks a 4 for 4 streak on Nurture’s singles, I expect nothing less than one of the best electronic projects of the year.