Super Stereo
3


3.6
great

Review

by Voivod STAFF
January 1st, 2019 | 3 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Greece’s Super Stereo articulate the mental struggles of coping within the homeland’s walls, while toiling for some rays of light.

Ever since rock set foot on Greece, there always was this segregation between the folk/rock outfits voicing their lyrics in their mother tongue, and those expressing themselves by means of the universal language of modern/post-WWII times. Due to the very choice to do so and the initially poor adaptation to the language, the latter cluster was often scoffed by the former. In principle, native bands writing in Greek had the inherent privilege of standing on the shoulders of giants, namely an array of critically acclaimed Greek poets and novel writers who sculpted the country’s multifaceted cultural legacy. For the other cluster, the so-called “language barrier” had to be overcome at first; from the ‘70s onward however, as the country begun to stagger past the seclusion imposed by its criminally narrow-minded political authority, Greeks gradually got better and better in foreign language speaking/writing, with the respective lyrical yield of music outfits following suit.

And then, when the ‘90s dawned, a seemingly abrupt transition occurred in the quality of native lyrical content, analogous only to the effect the Dark Ages had on propagation and development of the knowledge unearthed by ancient civilizations in preceding centuries. With rampant illiteracy as their only excuse, a significant portion of lyrical content writers (mostly in the folk/pop circuit) chose to ignore the wealth of Greek literature, constantly churning lyrics/lyrical themes of the lowest quality, unlike their Greek rock and English-lyrics-writing counterparts who kept getting better and better. On a relevant note, fewer and fewer people read newspapers, whereas the increasing destitution of output from the mentioned outlets and their native digital counterparts, prompted Greeks with good-to-proficient knowledge of English, to turn to the yield of international organizations, for letting themselves in the know on what’s going on in the motherland and abroad. The train of those events took its toll, succinctly posited by Greece’s rock act Super Stereo in the liner notes of their second album Το Τ*ρας (The Monster), that for a long time now, Greeks are speaking Greek, while increasingly thinking in English.

Super Stereo’s decision to write and sing in their mother tongue not just for their third album, frugally titled 3, is a deeply conscious disposition and a no bs, nationalism-free proof of concept that when handled correctly, Greek language can paint a selected theme as precisely and vividly as English. To that end, credit is due to the band’s vocalist Thanasis Dzingovic, because of his genuine impetus in largely evading the mishaps that can turn lyrics of any language pretentious, rubbish even. His choice of simple words, and the spot-on rhymes that they form, make it so easy for participating in the sing-along of lyrics, whose somber, struggling temperament either amplifies or seemingly contradicts the musical demeanor of the arrangements. In album opener “’Άσχημοι Δρόμοι-Ugly Alleys”, easily one of the album’s most brooding cuts lyrically and musically, he is all but eloquent when the character portrayed therein, is monologuing about how, instead of resisting cruelty and indifference towards fellow man, he/she unconsciously let those traits consume him/her, little by little. Style-wise, Dzingovic has not reinvented the wheel, in a nutshell he can be considered as a whimsical version of Lou Reed, which means his highly original cadence, is practically the same throughout the album, although on 3 the improvement is notable with respect to the previous album.

Be that as it may for Dzingovic’s vocal work, that’s not the case for Super Stereo’s musical comings and goings. On par with the vocals, arrangements don’t tread on any new territory, yet they are diverse and effective in their scope, convincingly touching upon ‘60s rock n’ roll (the banger “Σκυλιά-Dogs”, with the cryptic lyrics), ‘70s classic rock, the blues, post punk (“Αύριο-Tomorrow” kicks out the jams), ‘90s pop/alternative rock even (album closer “Καθώς Τινάζουν τα Χαλιά-As The Rugs Are Being Dusted” is a direct tribute to Beck and his ‘90s hit “Loser”). Elaborating on the mentioned array of styles, Super Stereo are not casting one-phase alloys of variable composition and speciation, rather they skillfully perform semi-quantum leaps from one to the other. Despite the album’s multitude of loans which acts as a detractor in terms of originality, its appreciable replay value is somewhat difficult to contest, and this is coming from a music enthusiast who’s profoundly sceptical (in some cases, for a good reason) of native pop/rock/metal acts and their alleged quality. With 3, Super Stereo remain true to their core incentives, lyrically they are situated way above average for homeland standards (and that involves established local rock “behemoths”), whereas musically they seem to have what it takes, so as to grow further in future releases.



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user ratings (1)
3.6
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
Voivod
Staff Reviewer
January 1st 2019


8140 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6 | Sound Off

Album stream:

http://superstereo3.bandcamp.com/album/3









Constructive criticism is most welcome.

Digging: Insonus - The Will to Nothingness

rockandmetaljunkie
January 2nd 2019


7687 Comments


καλη χρονια να εχουμε γιαννο !!

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
January 2nd 2019


8140 Comments

Album Rating: 3.6 | Sound Off

Καλή χρονιά ροκεντμεταλτζανκι και λοιποί συμπατριώται!



Happy new year to everyone, even though I seem to be “incapable” of finding a happy piece of music to write about, the cloudy stuff appears to have more juice than the happy one, regardless of genre.



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