Saturday, 9 May 2020

Enter Shikari "Nothing Is True & Everything Is Possible" (2020)

Reeling back upon The Spark's softening shift in tone, Enter Shikari return with a spicy self historical mix up. Nothing Is True has rolled up a little bit of everything tried so far in their five records leading to this sixth installment. The four lads have been together since their teenage years, forging a unique identity that can be felt through the chemistry. I have a deep affinity for their music. Ive seen them go from local pubs, clubs and schools to headlining festivals. Its been simply magical and I will always have a soft spot for them, making it hard to not enjoy anything they do!

The albums sentiment comments on our technology driven age haunted by science denial, trolls, bots, fake news and social media hysteria. Its a finger on a pulse that has been pounding for a while, the perspectives often shaped through a dystopian lens seem second fiddle to the groups excellent song writing. The power of hooks and catchy lyrics are better felt through the passion Rou delivers them with than there content. That may just depend on how deep you've dove into these topics beforehand.

Its fifteen songs are cracking, a constant roll out of fun, energy and passion with a retroactive array of aesthetics, keenly from the synths that pull from the best of electronic oriented sounds experimented in the past. Its a framework around songwriting that periodically dips into trendy Alternative Pop stylings. Despite all being good songs, Crossing The Rubicon, The Pressure's On & Satellites reek off imitation with a direction clearly emulating others, rather than perusing that Shikari purism.

The rest of the record has that uniqueness intact with a fair spread of experimentation that occasionally gets a little wild. Elegy For Extinction breaks things up with a moment of pure symphonic wonder as a dense orchestral composition builds a fiery intensity to propel the music into its most bipolar moment with rave synths and dirty pounding dance floor percussion firing off under modulated vocals. Its a wild treat that shows the band still have a knack to pull together all aspects of influences.

If their is anything left to be desired, perhaps the group didn't do anything unexpected. As fantastic as their endlessly youthful and exuberant style is, this unifying sound of all attempted before misses an opertunity to surprise which is something each record has had to it before, a new territory to uncover. Despite that, its familiarity plays like a group of old friends returning to give you new stories you'll cherish. Nothing Is True is loaded with songs to subtly slip alongside the best of their setlists.

Favorite Tracks: The Great Unknown, The Dreamers Hotel, Apocaholics, T.I.N.A, Elegy For Extinction
Rating: 8/10