Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sin Fang's "Flowers" stale, dry

Sin Fang - "Flowers"
Morr Music
-out Feb. 19
2.5 / 5

Icelandic singer/writer Sindri Már Sigfússon takes his third solo foray with Flowers, an intelligent and inventive exploration of pop. And explore is the operative word here: with a pastiche of everything you could imagine - hand claps, strings, synth - the sheer vision and balance of each element is artfully done, each piece rendered in perfect cohesion with each other. Tracks like "What's Wrong with Your Eyes" immerse with such pleasure and subtlety  that we had to take a step back to determine what were the elements that really held Flowers back.

The chanting of "Young Boys" hits it perfectly. It's a great, quiet, respectful track (strange to say about smoking in the woods, but it is). At its heights, Sin Fang renders unique thumbprints of tracks, blending together several different voices into a cohesive whole. Imagine a toy shop alive, each piece in intricate order and playing its unique voice. Flowers has this going for it, but the brilliance it possesses just doesn't stick in the gut; many of the songs don't travel well from the pen to the ear to the heart. They just don't trigger something uncontrollable, something instinctual, which is really what this music should be aiming for. The droning "See Ribs" and "Sunbeam" are the dark side of the argument: really dry, really esoteric, and lacking all the intricacies of the stronger tracks. While side A sounds mostly interesting, much of that side B peters out, and could simply use the brushup of a rewrite, as it is placid and lacking passion and direction. It's these tracks that keep Flowers from being a decent album.

We greatly appreciate his fresh take on the pop genre, and there is, at times, a clear, delicate and gorgeous balance. It's just that Sin Fang doesn't have the stamina or motivation to bring this vision beyond a few tracks, and for all our appreciation of the good work here, it makes the bad stuff that much worse. Spoiled potential; take a pass.

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