By John Bedard

Artwork for The Overview Effect by SanctionWell, I was not expecting that when I pressed play. There is no lead into this album at all just instant brutality! At first, I thought I might have only gotten part of the track in my download but no it is correct, and honestly is not a way I have heard an album open up really ever. It is kinda cool actually. It is definitely a design choice that I would not have expected to work but, in this case, it does. So, I guess I will just get right into it. I already have had more setup than they did.

There is a ton of complexity to the musical style throughout this whole album. It is kinda all over the place but in a good way. Like organized chaos. There are these huge contrasting elements from soft to heavy and some of these shifts are just as abrupt as the intro. Once again this is not something I would have expected to work but it does and creates an experience that stands out as something I have not really ever heard before at least not quite like this. I especially loved the wide use of instruments adding a lot of variety to the experience.

Vocally, there is a pretty similar story. For most of the album, we have a heavy distorted screamed vocal that fits the whole organized chaos feeling well but there is also this spoken word in many of the tracks taken from other sources. It somewhat reminds me of how the spoken word is integrated into progressive psychedelic. I even recognize one of the clips from a progressive psy track I have heard in the past. Very different genres I know but with a similar feeling and structure making this album pretty interesting from the listener’s perspective especially if you are a fan of both.

This is a unique one for sure. There is so much to unpack. So much chaos is organized into an experience that feels very intentional and well put together. I’m not going to say this is for everyone as it is probably an acquired taste but for many, this is a must-have album. I am glad I experienced it. Give it a listen even if it is not your thing you have to appreciate how well-crafted it is as an experience and how well they managed to make such unconventional choices work so well.

  • ‘The Overview Effect’ is out now. You can get your copy HERE.

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