Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Album Review: Wild by Troye Sivan

 
I must say na he is my newest fave artist!!! So gwaps and ganda ng voice.. Ito na naman ako umaarts! Hahaha back to album review.

Album: WILD
Artist: Troye Sivan
Location: Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Date of Release: 4th September 2015
Genre: Pop, Dream-pop
Reviewer: Khaleesi
For Fans Of: Sigur Ros, Alcest, The xx
Why They Aren’t Famous: Oh believe me, he’s famous

Track Listing:
1. WILD – 3:47
2. BITE – 3:06
3. FOOLS – 3:40
4. EASE (featuring BROODS) – 3:33
5. THE QUIET – 3:46
6. DKLA (featuring Tkay Maidza) – 4:15

The new EP WILD from Perth-based dream-pop artist and YouTuber TROYE SIVANcontinues on from the success of his previous effort Trxye (thanks to his hordes of fans), but also further progresses and matures into the overall theme of love. WILD has so far caught the attention of many, from fangirls to fellow artists such as Taylor Swift and Sam Smith. With WILDtopping charts worldwide and receiving A LOT of airplay, the amount of praise this EP is getting is well goddamn deserved.


I’ll kick this off with the vocals: amazing! Troye’s vocal range is perfectly suited for the style and the instrumentation of each track. For the majority of the EP his vocals are left untouched, which is great – especially when there is a break in the music, so you can really listen to him singing and appreciate how great it is. The vocals also have somewhat of a calming feel to them, as if you’re being sung a lullaby. The backing vocals also add great harmonies, but sound even more interesting when they’re echoing through the instruments or if they had been auto-tuned to give a robotic feel or even if they had a change in pitch to show an obvious contrast, as demonstrated in ‘EASE’, ‘BITE’ and ‘FOOLS’ respectively.

There is a lot of synthesiser in this EP. That being said, it isn’t overdone to the point where all you hear is white noise whenever you listen to it or you’ve been transported back to the 80’s. What’s great about the synth elements of the EP is that it’s not overpowering and it isn’t completely drowning out all of the other elements of each song. A lot of the synth used is simple and downplayed to either showcase Troye’s vocal talent further or intensify other instruments used such as in ‘WILD’, ‘THE QUIET’ and ‘DKLA’. However, the synth also builds up to make the build-up to the chorus that much more exciting, leading to a lot of goosebumps, as I experienced in ‘BITE and ‘FOOLS’. Where there wasn’t synth, there was piano as the organic, soothing substitute.

 

The percussion, for the most part, is slightly softened to provide a base for the synth, piano and the vocals and not completely dominate over everything else. At other times, however, the beat kicks it up a few notches in terms of intensity. Different sounds are used as the snare in each song which really provides variety within the EP. Nobody likes an artist that dishes out the same stuff over and over again and thankfully Troye doesn’t do that, bringing joy to our ears. The marimba used in ‘EASE’ added a different dimension to the percussion which I really enjoyed because it kept things interesting.

Two artists were guests on WILD: New Zealand-based band Broods and Adelaide-based singer and rapper Tkay Maidza. Both artists added to the songs they were featured in fantastically and I think they should definitely collaborate with Troye Sivan again in the future. I’ll start with Broods. They featured in ‘EASE’ and oh my god. Troye and Georgia (the vocalist) sounded amazing together. The harmonies during the chorus, Georgia’s echoing vocals during the second verse…I could go on and on but in short I had an eargasm during ‘EASE’. Tkay Maidza featured in ‘DKLA’ and did a short rap. The rap sounded interesting to say the least. I am personally not that familiar with her but I am intrigued to go and find more of her tracks after hearing her 15 seconds of fame in ‘DKLA’. To me, she sounds like if Azealia Banks and Nicki Minaj somehow got over their feud, hooked up and had a baby but less ratchet. Overall, I was happy with what the guest artists brought to the table.

 

The lyrics in WILD are overall very well written. All of the song’s lyrics develop from the theme of love from significant others to family. At times the lyrics sound a little pop-punk but who doesn’t love a bit of pop-punk? The EP’s lyrical theme starts with someone you love “driving me wild”, gradually moves on to a conversation between a mother & a child then a conversation between the now older child and their significant other about what makes them happy or “feel at ease”, then ends with the struggle of heartbreak. Sounds pretty generic but when you actually listen to each track and their lyrics, it provides somewhat of a different interpretation to what one may hear on the radio all the time (i.e. sex, instigating the breakup, etc).

WILD‘s production is very well arranged and organised. The transitions between verses and choruses is smooth with no speed bumps or roadblocks along the way, it just builds up to each part of the songs. Not one instrument is overpowering or drowning out the other elements of each song, except for the occasional deliberate drowning out of the vocals in ‘THE QUIET’. Overall, I get an organised chaos sort of theme with the production. There are so many sounds going at once but it doesn’t sound like a 3 year old snuck into the studio and started pressing every single button. And who’s life isn’t a little chaotic? You would be lying to yourself if you said ‘no’ to this question.

Overall I am very pleased with this EP. The theme of organised chaos in the instruments with the lyrical theme of love marries very well together (let’s face it, love is chaotic). The vocals were amazing, the synths and occasional piano sounded great, the percussion is fantastic, the guest artists brought variety to the overall EP…there was nothing for me to hate about this EP. WILD is certain to become one of the frequents in my car’s CD player. I am definitely looking forward to Troye’s next musical venture!

 

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