We see a lot of 'revivals' occurring the last few years in many forms of art, especially in music. From the Neon-Lit, synth era of the 80's to the remake of the legendary music video of 'Freestyler', things seems to go round in circles. Just like fashion. In this context, the latest SIR-VERE album is pretty serious about bringing back the sound of 90's-00's electronic music, when The Prodigy was elevating the underground culture to the surface. Let's get into 'Singulus' right away.
As ‘Hunger’ is opening the curtain we fall into a deep narcosis. The heavy percussion brought ‘Velocifero’ to my mind, maybe Ladytron’s most commercial album to date, surely among their 'biggest' in terms of sound. It's rich, repetitive as it should with a 'pop-ish', rock twist towards the end that caught me off guard in a good way. Then, the devilish ‘Re:birth’ is following with its 'Firestarter' - breakbeat quality and sensual vocals that dwell somewhere between an underground party and Inferno itself. Let’s say that ‘Re:birth’ is the code word for the gates of hell. Makes sense to me! Now, If ‘All you ever do’ had substance it could cut through the hardest metal like some surreal chainsaw. Vengeful and edgy ‘All you ever do is BREAK – ME – DOWN’ is the ultimate statement to scream over piercing synths, vomiting all the toxicity and oppression we’ve ever been through. And just when I was starting to need some huge, thumping kick to go with this mood, here comes ‘Masquerade’ bringing it on with a nasty attitude like an action/Sci-fi movie OST where the protagonist is the world’s most famous crook. This plays in the background of the biggest bank robbery in history. Even the title of the track fits that concept! Well played! Same goes for 'Lips, Pt1', adding a female playfulness and a familiar noise that revives the old electronic scene. ‘Lips, Pt1’ sounds like the most vintage specimen of this resurrection until now.
At this point the music style takes a different turn with SIR-VERE rocking and rolling for the first time in here with ‘My Mind’, dripping some subtle electronic ‘drops’ for extra spice. More organic and classic, quite unexpected to be honest, but as the track progresses it feels more and more cohesive with the whole thing. The bass of ‘Do You Love Me’ will vibrate into every corner of your skull and into every layer of your skin while the echoing vocals contribute to this calculated chaos. There’s a psychedelic touch somewhere in there but it’s hard to grasp. I'd visualize the track as a multi-colored Vortex that sucks you into a dizzying rotation for 4 and a half minutes. As the album goes on, the breakbeat style is losing its grip, letting the vibes flow towards many different directions and into a variety of fields. I mean, this is clearly an electronic piece, gently touched by rock, but Ι couldn’t pass by some funk and even psychedelic flavors injected here and there. Now, a very much needed moment called ‘Extra beat in my heart’ is actually a refreshing breeze to chill us during a hot summer day. Groovy and laid back like Austin Powers (talking about funk). Even though the tension of SIR-VERE's percussion is still there, it somehow leaves space for the mind to travel into a beach party to dance, have some good laughs and drink cocktails. Well I’ve decided to stay at this party and lose myself over the -almost maddening- synth and electric guitar of 'Beneath My Skin'. This can become addictive and goes definitely among my favorites of the album.
The drums are taking over, announcing the end of ‘Singulus’ in ‘You Me & The Continuum’. This is jamming to eternity with ethers coming and going, risers burning up and away like stars, looping into this erratic, spacial mix that might leave you numb, staring into nothingness.
Wrapping it up, if you are a fan of bands in the likes of Bomfunk Mc’s and The Prodigy, then SIR-VERE’s ‘Singulus’ is more than safe for you. It’s a sturdy, representative piece of 90’s-00’s underground electronic music made in 2021! You’ll find everything you’re familiar with during the first half of the album plus a remarkable -genre blending- experimentation during the last half that only adds to the experience like extra parmesan on Italian pasta. Buon appetito!
Listen to SIR-VERE: