Androids Do Dream: Simpler Times’ Replicants - Music Review

 Original Synth

Simpler Times - Cover

What do YOU dream of? 

That’s the opening question in the debut EP from Simpler Times.  Named Replicants, this EP is a pulse-pounding trip back in time to a Berlin dance floor from the early 1980s.  Bowie-esque, think of his production on Iggy Pop’s The Idiot, and you will get a feel for the rhythms and the soundscapes felt here. 

"Like any good art, though, once it nestles into your mind, it stays"


And that’s just the first track.  Called “Replicants”, a spacy opening number that sets the stage for the otherworldly sounds heard here.  Echoing and full of a number of voices, the song might call out Blade Runner as an obvious influence but, man, does it ever set the stage for the emotion of the entire album.  It is, at once, emotional AND alien.  Something Bowie was a master at. Simpler Times

This British/Italian duo, Timothy (vocals) and Matteo (music), put their best synth foot forward and give audiences four tracks of nostalgic-sounding synthwave tunes in a breathless 21-minutes.  That is made clear in “Portofino”, the second track that offers a moving melody over early Depeche Mode-like beats; patterned and echoing.  Here, the duo tackles 1983 in a song the continues an artistic approach to life as an android. 

The third track, “Heroes of the Night”, offers a bit of a twist to the synthetic sublime musings.  Here, we have a pulsating beat and a rousing melody that bursts with urgency, a searing solo, and higher-pithed vocals that add to the fierceness of the track.  Heads will bob.  Feet will tap.  And that disco ball above our heads just might spin a bit more out of control.  Am I insane?  That’s the question pondered here as this duo turns a dark light on their Pet Shop Boys sensibilities. Simpler Times

The fourth and final track, “Shiro Z31”, is a sparkling hypnotic ode to high speed travels at night.  You can practically taste the chrome and the steel as the city lights reflect off of the hood of this car.  Again, the vocals stretch out to the night sky above as we travel straight into the past thanks to nostalgic noodlings of this duo.  Red Barchetta anyone?  Because I’m hearing all sorts of Geddy Lee here.  And it absolutely works. {googleads}

Simpler Times’ EP requires a few listens in order for it to fully sink in.  Like any good art, though, once it nestles into your mind, it stays.  It’s immediately alien; totally android; and kicks in all the right spots to make Replicants a trippy synthwave cocktail that will have you dreaming in no time of, yes, simpler times.  It is now available thanks to Sunlover Records.

3/5 notes

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Simpler Times

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