The U.K.’s Seething Akira are set to release their long-awaited debut album, ‘Sleepy Skeletor’ this week. Having already established themselves in the live space, Seething Akira have previously opened for bands such as Skindred, Hacktivist and Don Broco, as well as having played some big name festivals including Bloodstock. With a 25 second introductory track titled EST 2010 – Intro made up of chatter and background noise, we become increasingly curious as for what to expect of the following tracks.
The Monster From Brussels draws you in with its groovy bass line, before jumping in head first with electronic synths and making way for the vocals with a scream. The Monster From Brussels has a ‘metal meets hip hop’ vibe to it, bringing together a particularly unique combination of rock, groove, rap and heavy electronica. It is clear from the get go that these guys aren’t for everyone, whilst others may well love the funky combination.
Matching Poles of Magnets brings with it an old school 90’s hip hop vibe complete with mini breakdowns before the synths kick in, bringing with them a much more modern feel and melding the two extremes together in a particularly funky way. Half Empty strips things back to somewhat of an eerie vibe. Stepping back from the ambitiously eclectic mix of sounds in the earlier tracks, this song provides much more of a vocal focal point, without the distraction of overbearing synths.
Jumping straight back into the deep end, I Am The Devil brings back the strong electronic sounds from the beginning. A heavier track, this would be the catchiest song of the album so far, with a great beat to see it through. Backlash featuring Olly Simmons of the Brighton-based drum ‘n’ bass band The Quemists has a heavier focus on instrumentation, proving restraint in not overusing all the effects available to them. Unfortunately this song doesn’t have anything to really grab your attention until near the end, sadly coming as too little, too late.
Pack Animals teleports us back to the year 2000 – back when everything was trying perhaps a little too hard to be futuristic. Aside from a particularly basic drum beat, musically this song is essentially purely electronica overlaid with staggered vocals. Along with Pack Animals, Paralysed may not particularly appeal to many rock fans. This is another heavily electronic song, however Paralysed has a stronger structure to it than its predeceasing track and feels much less “try hard.”
Bringing in another guest artist, this time singer/songwriter Dani Uziel, Even Angels Break Hearts changes things up – somewhat. Breaking up the busyness of Seething Akira’s trademark sound, Uziel brings in a mellow feel in moments, which have been mixed just right, however, combined with the typical Seething Akira sound, it just sounds choppy and therefore doesn’t quite work the way it was probably intended to. Even Angels Break Hearts flows so well into Disconnect that it’s hard to tell the song had even changed. Disconnect tones things back without dipping to the point of boring, and is the most solidly structured song on the album, making it an enjoyable listen, despite a bit of a lack in wow factor. Closing off ‘Sleepy Skeletor’ is The Islander, a song which puts a strong focus on the hip hop side of their sound. This is the kind of track you could expect to hear in a club, and will appeal to fans of both the rock and hip hop genres.
Merging together totally different genres may be a greatly creative idea in theory, in practice, it more often than not just doesn’t work. While some fans of both rap/hip hop and rock/metal may enjoy some tracks on this album, some songs on their own, as well as the album as a whole feels extremely eclectic and felt as if the band weren’t sure what they were trying to achieve with their sound, and therefore decided to try everything.
PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY OF ‘SLEEPY SKELETOR’ HERE!