In the era where everything is a reference of something else, only a couple bands stand out from the status quo. Superorganism, who’s only been around a little over a year, is one of those bands that are a perfect reflection of the times. The eight-piece, London-based group just dropped their self-titled debut the other day and it’s a real breath of fresh air.
For starters, it’s hard to describe Superorganism’s sound. It’s a little bit of everything as well as something very specific. Electro-Pop would be the assumption at first rotation; it’s unbelievably catchy, and the production is fantastically polished. On songs like It’s All Good and Reflections on the Screen, there’s an emphasis on synthesizers paired with programmed drums under airy vocals. Where the band deviates from the traditional techno is in their lyricism. There’s depth within Orono Noguchi’s words and an exact aesthetic she achieves. The juxtaposed melancholic words with optimistic instrumentals comes across genuinely, but still holds sarcastic undertones.
On the second or third rotation there’s deeper elements the listener will pick up on. The first will probably be the guitars and the wide array of textures Christopher “Harry” Young produces. The best example of his involvement in the equation can be found on my personal favorite track, Something for You M.I.N.D.. Throughout the track, the guitar doesn’t have a grandeur presence, but the unpretentious slide part that coolly sits in the mix allows the song to enter the realm of garage rock, resembling the early work of Mazzy Star or Slowdive. The same goes for the album’s first single, Everybody Wants to be Famous in which the guitar plays a simplistic part but its prescience adds so much to the song as a whole.
The other element worth noting on Superorganisms self-titled is their use of sampling. As stated above, the band is a perfect reflection of their generation. This can be attributed to the amount of samples thrown at the listener during the LP. It’s audible sensory overload in the best way possible; like going through your Instagram feed at top speed, not looking for anything but a distraction. The samples don’t overstay their welcome, however. Noguchi’s vocals remain at the forefront the whole time and share an effortless rapport with the samples. While the samples are utilized in every song on the record, Superorganism’s expertise in this field is best shown on Nai’s March. This and and the aforementioned guitars both serve as nods the bands obvious desire to transcend genre; a similar route in which The Go! Team went this year too.
A strong debut for Superorganism. Right out of the gate, the band has created their own universe to exist within that other musicians haven’t covered yet. While old songwriting technique suggests referencing current trends hamper a song from becoming classic, Superorganism throw that idea out the window. This is also what’ll make their first album stand out from other releases this year; their fearlessness in talking about what’s happening via literalism in lieu of metaphor.
Click here to see the video for Everybody Wants to be Famous.
– By Mike Metcalf