“Season One” by sydneyunicorns is just as much of a sonic experience as it is a song. Replete with a tasteful dusting of white noise, a slew of soaring keyboard effects, and fantastical background vocals, this song goes above and beyond to create a visceral atmosphere.
The intro invites a few different sounds: a gentle jingling, a distant siren, and a full, ringing vocal line. The verse lyrics come in on top of all of this, sporting such lyrics as, “away from the sun, are we supposed to break and bend?” and “I don’t know the answers to the questions I ask myself.” The theme seems to be rather existential, which is clearly also reflected in the music.
As the song floats on, the form becomes more and more irregular. Forgoing the traditional verse-chorus shape, the melodies perform some combination of repetition and novelty. As Sydney utters the line, “I’m not religious, or maybe I wish I was,” the vocals ascend far higher than they have before, suddenly altering the range and pace of the song. As she cascades off of this note, background vocals join in on the straight-tone, soprano crooning. Reverb drips from every sound, giving the sonic landscape a semi-angelic feeling–which is ironic because many of the lyrics question religiosity. It’s a poetic choice to contrast the cathedral-esque sound with the sorrowful sentiments toward theology.
If you have any interest in a dramatic, spacious, vibrant piece, this song could be for you. The vocal arrangement and production are immaculate, and the lyrics might just make you consider–or reconsider some things about yourself and the world around you.
Written by Alyce Lindberg