Retoryka - Floccinaucinihilipilification - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Retoryka - Floccinaucinihilipilification

by Nathan Fidler Rating:4 Release Date:2016-05-22

Tagging yourself as 'uneasy listening' doesn’t usually bring the listeners flooding in, but for Kevin Retoryka, a London-based singer-songwriter, the tag brings more intrigue than it ever should. Having milled around with some singles and a decent EP in Supermaudlin, the rather fitting title of Floccinaucinihilipilification of his latest EP should give you an idea of what you’re dealing with here.

Throughout the EP, there are tracks which shimmer with something close to good music; the distinct, British indie guitar sound underneath these songs shouldn’t be so hard to listen to. The reality is that by throwing in background vocals and a singing style meant to portray a sly coolness, it all comes off as disinterested.

Despite sounding like a teenage indie band being forced to practice by their parents, you can see where the songwriting abilities lie too. In the melodies themselves there are the odd hooky moments. ‘Arts & Minds’ broods about no one being American, but the point is unclear beyond that and little else happens over a track registering nearly four minutes.

‘Ice Breaker’ manages to combine a quality melody along with a fairly vivid run down of the changing landscape in a town. “Expert bespoke coffee shops, they’re such vintage style” Retoryka bites - but once again, the crazed backing vocals sound like an off-key fan wailing beside the mic.

Coming in at over 20 minutes, ‘Symphonie Monotone’ is plainly just a bonkers man standing with the keys on a synth pressed down for the entire time. While this isn’t an offensive sound, it shouldn’t really be considered a piece of music - it’s yet another move to come across as some kind of avant garde genius.

There is quite clearly a reason this is uneasy listening, because it’s not easy to listen to, but not because it says or does something groundbreaking or unfamiliar.

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