Deconstructed pop healing with Saint Idiot’s ‘Terracotta’

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‘Terracotta’ begins frantically, seemingly randomly, like a child is pressing all the buttons at once. It’s a look-at-me opening with a tuned percussion-like sound, perhaps a futuristic xylophone. It’s the sort of sound I imagine you’d get if you started up fifty computers at once. But with an album called ‘Alternate Utopias from a Nostalgic Future’, it seems perfectly reasonable.

Saint Idiot – Terracotta

Saint Idiot, or Tomáš Andel, admirably takes on the subject of masculinity in this album. “I want to be a little person taking up little space”, he sings in ‘Terracotta’, his pure vocals soaring with some impressive high notes.

The track is a frenzied search for healing and self-love, a plea to recognise men’s self-hurt, and an aching desire to be “not afraid to be radically happy.”

The Slovak-Canadian art-pop musician also identifies as a multimedia artist, and fans of Bjork and left-field music should find his ‘deconstructed pop’ music a treat.

For those with mainstream tastes, ‘Terracotta’ will prove a challenging listen. First, there are the erratic synths, like the heartbeat of some agitated, bedbound robot. Then an unexpected house beat kicks in, underneath delayed, trippy vocals. The final coda is a swirling spaceship takeoff, with beautiful tremolo strings. It’s a bold introduction to an eclectic album, but once the shock wears off, there’s an undeniable sincere emotion to it. “When we die, we only keep what we’ve given”, ponders Andel. Anyone unafraid to go on a galactic sound journey should definitely keep an eye on Saint Idiot.

‘Terracotta’ is out on April 7th, with the full album due in September.

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Words Eden Tredwell