New Opera Hero, back with a fresh release, have bestowed to us a song that is very much like a wolf at the gate; its sheer force is inevitable upon first contact and once you let it in, it promises not to go away. Greeted with a cascading rush of polyrhythms that go straight to the visceral senses of my body, I am instantly stimulated and attuned to notice the incoming flicker of various synths that weave their way to-and-fro between percussive hits in a musical game of cat and mouse. I’m hearing all sorts of stylistic ideas coming into the equation very quickly: techno, garage, drum ‘n’ bass, trip-hop – the eclectic mix is apparent yet doesn’t sound over indulgent. Less can sometimes be more, but in this instance New Opera Hero tie together the complex stylistic components effortlessly into a piece completed by crisp production and engaging music. Intriguing it most certainly is, relaxing – it most definitely isn’t.
There is however a method to the madness: such an onslaught creates an atmosphere that intends to signify the chaotic nature of the world we live in. Take the title of the track ‘Eat, Work, Sleep’; these three monosyllabic phrases act as the main melodic refrain, repeated cyclically to reinforce the notion of the sometimes stagnant and repetitive nature we can find ourselves caught-up-in when we bow down to the mundane ‘9 to 5’ lifestyle. With this in mind, the group actively request that we view the world from their point of view – which, if you are a mutant-like baby, ravaging through the most colorful of visuals, tells us that surely, while life may get stagnant we must be open to move both with – and against – the cartel. I’m sorry if I’ve lost you, the baby reference comes from the group’s excellent video (which can be found below), which is a mirage of both beauty and horror. The narrative is very interesting and has a lot of sub-text, which depending on your own interpretation, could either hint to reincarnation and/or just a bleak representation of how people are ‘living-to-work’ rather than ‘working-to-live’ in modern day society. Visually the video is stunning and it also serves as blueprint to their live shows which are very much a multi-media affair.
It should be noted too that the video is accompanied by an ‘instrumental-soundtrack’ version of the song which is of course, not too dissimilar to the original, but importantly features some new musical moments which ultimately – combined with less vocal presence – creates an almost entirely new track; the baby’s older brother lets say. A beautiful example of this can be heard around the 2.25 mark during a moment of serenity that features a reflective interchange between a subtle piano structure and a string arrangement that fundamentally act to subconsciously mold how we comprehend the correlating onscreen visual. With so much creative energy at work, it is unfortunate that the band’s last show in the UK was in January of this year, however with such artistic flair combined with brilliance, I am sure it won’t be long until they are back on these shores. Eat, Work, Sleep is out tomorrow on Burst TV Records.
Check out their Soundcloud, which from tomorrow onwards will feature their new single and links to download it:
Their sublime video for the track can be enjoyed here:
Words by Robbie Cully