We at PressPLAY have always enjoyed a bit of electro-post-rock, not to be confused with crock-pot-electrock which is something entirely different. Trying to pin Son Lux into a single genre is equally confusing. But it’s also a lot of fun.
New York musician Ryan Lott has been crafting his unique brand of alternative rock and hip-hop for the best part of a decade, but it was his 2014 tour with fellow East Coast fusion fans San Fermin that really made us sit up and take some serious notice of his back catalogue.
Thankfully Son Lux’s newest feature-length release Bones has all the welcome quirk and beauty we’d hoped for. It’s also an all-thriller, no-filler offering, which we are becoming ever grateful for in a world where artists are churning out albums before we’ve had time to put a wash on from the last one.
For those who might need an avenue into the magical world of Son Lux, here’s a cheeky comparison to get the ball rolling. Lott’s vocals have a whiff of Brandon Flowers about them but his sweeping melodies are nothing short of anthemic, showcased with gusto in the minimal yet massive Your Day Will Come (small but perfectly formed, as they say).
Lott has a wonderful ability to make so few instruments and samples in each track come together with delicate precision to create a swathe of evocative sound. Global and hip-hop influences come to the fore in the wicked cool tracks You Don’t Know Me and This Time, with I Am The Others bringing a nice slab of trip-hop into the mix.
Things get perfectly pacey on the indie-flavoured Undone and the exceptionally beautiful White Lies moulds swirling strings with restrained distortion that leads into a little nibble of techno to awaken the senses. Intriguing lyrics of being tied to whipping trees, laying down weapons and crying out for freedom in tracks like Now I Want, with it’s gospel-esque vocals and hand clapping, conjure all sorts of political imagery.
There are surely stories to be heard within these songs, tales of emotions and broken hearts or dreams, but equally tales of social imbalance. This could well be a social manifesto in album form, with the juxtaposition of clean-cut “posh” vocals and massive electronic production creates an identifiable thread that holds all Son Lux tracks together, meaning Bones sits perfectly alongside earlier releases and has enough freshness to keep us interested.
Bones by Son Lux can be ordered here.