Apricity, the latest installment from UK outfit Syd Arthur, presents a spontaneous collection of genre-bending tracks. The ten strong record dabbles in jazz, psychedelic ambience and a unique take on the indie rock sound whilst simultaneously tackling everything in between. Despite the somewhat eccentric combination of the melodic elements, the album as a whole manages to achieve and pinpoint a real sense of cohesion in the midst of warped perception and psychedelic chaos.
Track wise, No Peace sees the band own and hammer home the psychedelic vibe they are known for, creating a real dreamscape scene with the intro. As the track progresses, the genre-bending kids pack a rocky punch, by building and layering a sound that’s catchy and captivating from beginning to end. The inclusion of instrumental number Portal, sees the band really play with sound, and work from a platform where they truly seem to excel. In no way does this track fall by the wayside.
Evolution leads the listener to the outskirts of the album, genre-wise, and is a real attempt by Syd Arthur to explore the dreamscape. Rather than be overpowering or all encompassing, the woozy psychedelic elements compliment the sound and really add an extra layer, which is, of course, all part of the band’s signature sound. This is evident in particular with tracks like Evolution, where warped vocals take priority, backed by a slightly left of centre mesh of electronic ambience.
But it’s really Plane Crash in Kansas where Syd Arthur really put forth a wonderfully simple yet punchy track. There’s a real lightness to frontman Liam Magill’s voice and, in combination with a perfect backdrop of soulfully nostalgic guitar, it immediately associates the listening experience with a true sense of warm and fuzzy familiarity – a true standout on the record. Every line falls together both lyrically and melodically, moving the track forward at a steadfast yet, cruisey, sunny Sunday afternoon pace.
The title track closes out the record and keeps exceptional pace. A track truly made for the live stage with the entire band utilising space and sound to propel it forward. There’s also an intricate and completely unexpected acoustic outro at the conclusion of the track, which winds down the record with just enough time to metaphorically take a breath and appreciate the album for what it truly is.
The overall feel of the record is a refined and a real modern take on nostalgia. By playing upon an effortless sense of cool, Syd Arthur have truly found comfort with Apricity, taking the chance to showcase the depth of their sound. Each track emulates a real sense of fun yet with the essential elements of intrigue achieved throuh haunting guitar and soundscapes. This latest instalment from Syd Arthur seamlessly meshes together a series of interwoven genres and elements, purposefully catering to each corner of their fanbase. As a collective, the band are so adept at changing and moulding their sound, that although each track differs in its approach, there’s a commonality that manages to draw the tracks together, making Apricity a wonderfully purposeful, full album experience.