London eight-piece Superorganism share a band, a house, and now a self-titled album, but it appears that they maybe are still yet to discover a coherent band image. Their debut is one that is full of fun, and a tribute to their skills being self-produced, written and recorded… But it also struggles to make sense.
Does an album need to make sense, or even share a coherent direction between tracks? It’s a question that rarely comes up given our tendencies to love artists who write stories with their material. Across Superorganism however, such a story never quite stands out. It feels, at the best of times the eclectic experimentation of a handful of meddling musicians. But what matters is that it sounds good. The lyrical work dance just above the line of nonsensical from teasing social commentary in ‘Everybody Wants to be Famous’ through to the party starting lines of ‘SPRORGNSM’ but it is these lines that really save the album.
The production on the album is entertaining, unique, and well done. A medley of seemingly random sounds and distorted vocals weave in and out of each other to create richly textured material. ‘The Prawn Song’ in particular stands out with its sounds of swishing water and screeching tires cutting above the instant connection to Ballina’s Big Prawn thanks to its racing cityscape formed on the production side of the release. This is where the album almost falls apart.
Each track is catchy, well produced, but fundamentally doesn’t have a real position. ‘Relax’ and ‘Everybody Wants to be Famous’ are arguably the only tracks that really offer the opportunity to connect with the band, and given that the album feels less like a consistent narrative as the vague recollection of party a week ago it just doesn’t always work. At times it feels like the perfect morning alarm album, and other times like it wants to pull you onto the dancefloor, yet there is no coherency to this.
Superorganism are a talented collective. Each track on this release deserves your time and affection. As an album though? It’s much harder to say. The album is one that fails to really fit any listening context, which makes it both a great all-rounder, and a useless one at the same time. All that can be said is that listeners should give it a few spins to at least work out which tracks they want to add to their playlists.