The latest EP release by independent artist Ssick titled ‘Shift’ offers an experimental slant on the alternative genre. The release is a fairly good size for an EP, with the 5 tracks covering just under 20 minutes. It helps show Ssick’s capabilities in the music world, with their music having a very dark and almost grunge-like essence to them. The EP is dominated by synth elements that create the beats that push the album along. There’s a lot to offer on this album, with there being some sort of visceral quality that somehow draws the listener in.
On ‘Shift’ the main dominating force seems to be the synth elements which are accompanied by unusual vocals and driving bass-lines It’s essentially synth-pop music, yet there is a very experimental quality to the style being incorporated on the album. There’s an incredibly dark quality to the music, which forms a large part of it’s appeal. It is reminiscent perhaps of Nine Inch Nail’s side-project How To Destroy Angels, or perhaps music by Marilyn Manson. Everything on the EP seems to just work, providing of course one can enjoy music that is perhaps a little angry and incredibly dark. There’s some great instrumentals at work, which when combined with Ssick’s vocals, makes a style that is at times, a little bizarre, but incredibly effective.
The EP itself starts off brilliantly, with the EP’s opening track ‘Everytime I Fall’ showing every element that works on the album. It seems though that as the EP progresses, a few working elements seem to get lost a bit, and a few of the tracks seem a little dull in comparison to the EP’s opener. The other tracks don’t necessarily have anything wrong with them, but they seem to pale just a little bit when compared with the opening track. Something as simple as reordering the track-listing would solve this, and help give the EP a better shape than what it already has.
Overall though, ‘Shift’ by Ssick is a brilliant synth-rock album, showing a great understanding of the genre, and the elements that make up the genre itself. There’s a lot that works on this EP, and seems to suggest a lot that works by Ssick. It would be easy to say that fans of such bands like Depeche Mode, or perhaps How To Destroy Angels will find a lot of similar ideas being incorporated on this album, and will therefore find a fair amount to enjoy on this EP. It is essentially a very good EP that has a lot to offer fans of synth-rock.
- ★★★★☆ 4/5
- Everytime I Fall
- Inside Her
- Change (Without Pain)
Ssick’s latest EP ‘Shift’ is available now, and can be streamed and purchased at Ssick’s bandcamp page available at: http://ssick.bandcamp.com/