As Nashville’s pop scene has grown and become more sophisticated, my one enduring wish has been for it to get weird. By 2020, I’d heard all of the wistful roséwave ballads, the beach-cruiser summer jams, the smoke-machine party anthems. What I really wanted was to hear bleepy, bloopy mayhem. And with f_Forever✰, singer Caroline Lucent and producer Daydream Nathan finally made that wish come true. On Binary ✰✰✰’s, the duo’s debut, Lucent and Nathan warp around PC Music-style lo-fi electro sounds and hard-candy Auto-Tune vocals. Songs like “tmf ♥♥♥” and “Pyrite Heart” are unmistakable pop bangers that pull at their genre tropes until they’re fully unraveled. Alongside Skin, an intimate follow-up EP that stripped the neon-hued party sounds into quiet introspection, f_Forever✰ deftly showed off two sides of the same coin, showing that painting outside of the lines pays off.