Thinking Out Loud

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Adam and the fish eyed poets- Snakeism

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Rock Street Journal- 2010

Falling in love with a band that’s new is a LOT like falling in love with a girl who you don’t know much about. Loads of excitement, that crazy anxiety, those silly trice- frights.

Is this a flash in the pan or a lasting relationship?

Will I regret this later on?

Is it too early to ask her out for a movie?

There’s a thrill that’s totally exclusive to young bands-- a promise and gusto that’s not only ‘hard’- but in stronger words- ‘difficult’ to arrest.

It is this promise that Chennai based Adam and The Fish Eyed Poets exemplify, with a debut album that has acquired more eulogize and drone in the last few weeks than it did during the first few months of their existence as a project.

Snakeism, the debut album from multi-personality frontman Kishore Krishna ( more appropriately referred to as ‘Adam’ here), manages to find a mushy, ripe area right in between- adding just the right amount of sentiment and skill to his art-form further packing the album with arrestingly simple melodies that ultimately flesh out into sneakily complex songs. Tracks like “crutch” and “ode to the thorn” sound like revisions of familiar melodies that I personally can’t quite put a finger on – because I can’t remember the name, but I’m fairly certain I heard my dad sing them on his easy chair a few years back.

Krishna is a philosopher- an artist almost in a bubble travelling through the universe without bursting out of his fears and his anxieties. It’s not that easy you know- being a 20 year old and acting double that age. He’s got a sensibility that most musicians lack in today’s scene- one that is backed by both Eccentricity and Predictability thrown in for good measure.

Fundamentally, the project's process of building from small chunks enables them to put endless diversities on each basic section of their songs—launching with a pulsing bass line and a plaintive piano separately, for illustration, and then packing them together in several recipes later in the song. Even the vocals are, by and large, just another component heavily played with- leading all the way and over-powering with choruses just as you begin to grow accustomed to the overall balance.

The record's general majesty has a whole lot to do with Krishna's voice, which hits every pitch with equal clarity and objective of tone- the man knows execution. Good thing, too, since Snakeism is an especially vocal-heavy record; excluding the tenth track "Deepthroat", there are few moments here where Krishna's voice isn't featured as much. He backs himself like a ghost, fills in non-verbal gaps and repeats sentiments like mantras ("She’s popping my bubble", “She’s denying me attention”, “The attention I so desperately need to escape my own resentment”).

I immensely enjoyed the classical flow and lyrics of “Sheepdog” the bass-driven, Ak-47 blaring appeal of “Can’t stand the light,” (:P) and I’m outright obsessed with the carnal, pumping energy of “Ouroboros blues.” I even kind of love “Johnny’s last stand” the singer’s moderately successful attempt at producing his own dépêche-mode-esque anthem.

Sure, it’s no Personal Jesus–but it’s still got its benefits here and there.

Suffice to say, AATFEP are a massively innovative project, and with snakeism, they've managed to make an album that's enormously available yet ‘lock, stock and barrel’ unconventional. The thing that drew me to the album in the first place was the magnificent artwork, which features a flipbook of twenty four pages of pictures and lyrics and very little other information- one more nuance that exemplifies the depth of detail apparent on this record.

“Charming" is the key word that comes to define Snakeism; while most of the guitar-based indie pop that's made waves over the past few years has been characterized by scenester animosity and attempts to fit in- this record is carefree and instantly likable-- even if it doesn't seem to care what you think of it.


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