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True Zebra – Idiorhythmic

by François Zappa

Sometimes we have some needs, like resting, eating or charging a mobile phone, that you can simply forget. All of them together made me lose the first part of True Zebra’s concert at W-Fest. That was something that I regretted just after listening to the last three songs and that got worse on the following day when some journalists commented that it was one of the best concerts of the day. Now Kevin Strauwen’s project has released a new album, entitled Idiorhythmic, the fourth of a career that started in 2012 with a homonymous record. Since then, he has been self releasing his albums and also the prestigious label Wool-E Records has published a compilation of his work, entitled 123. Idiorhythmic can be bought in digital version or as a beautiful digipack.

As Kevin Strauwen states, Idiorhythmic is a group of songs about the collapse of the self and the resulting disconnect with love. And about connections writes in “Connection is Addiction”, where the musician already displays his intentions, both lyrically and musically, in the way of an energetic electro, very catchy and with multiple layers. “Wait Wait Wait” is even more danceable, but keeping the same darkness with a powerful 4X4 and a beautiful interlude. It’s a perfect song for driving through endless motorways.

The thematic of the album continues in “Logistica and Thelemia”, the eternal fight between will and desire. The beginning reminds me of NIN, as Kevins’s favorite album is Downward Spiral, although Trent Reznor’s band just never been so purely electronic. The track continues with some industrial rhythms and powerful bass, and it’s for me one of the best moments of the record. The rpm goes down with the following tracks:”Weird,” a dangerously provocative and disturbing song with some lyrics that won’t let indifferent. The album continues with more NIN influences in “Sex”, just in the way of singing, although I think Kevin Strauwen has a more sensual feeling and focus more on that facet on his music. The sound of the synths is incredible as they seem to try to drill your brain. 

Frenetic rhythms are back in “Move”, a very cinematographic song with a beginning that sounds a bit like DAF and an EBM rhythms that I can only love. The album finishes with the track that names it, Idiorhythmic where the androgyny of Placebo dances over some industrial rhythms that remind us of Depeche Mode’s Construction Time Again creating a great electro track.

Last but not least, we would like to tell you that True Zebra has just released two albums in Bandcamp with some old tracks, some of them recorded before starting using his current moniker. The first one, newuarts: Moving Sound and Music For Film, includes songs from 1998 and 2011. There is also a second volume with tracks from 2008 to 2015 which was released in a very limited CD-R run in 2015 and now can be found again in the popular platform.

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