Spencer Bassett, a solo musician from Ireland, has created a new EP under his Flicker Rate moniker! This is his third release in form an EP, and he has established himself on the Internet as a strong up-and-coming instrumental artist. Through this new release called Skylight, Flicker Rate takes on various styles and genres to stand out from the numerous instrumental acts of today.
Right from the get-go, title track “Skylight” fills your ears with sweet and charming chords, coupled with a trap-style drum beat to give off a vibe in the vein of Polyphia‘s laid back tracks such as “Bittersweet”. However, it still maintains its originality through the use of odd time signatures in a very approachable way, making it flow really well throughout the whole song. Bassett takes a very twinkly and charming route in this one! Tasteful sound samples of birds and nature contribute to the sweet and innocent atmosphere of the whole song as Bassett gives a constant input of sweet tapped guitar notes.
The track “Cloud Drop” takes a much more groovy approach, now using acoustic-sounding drums with ghost notes to accompany the cascading riffs of the guitar, following a similar route of songwriting to bands such as TTNG. It is also met with a piano to add high register nuances to the melodic riffs, making it hard to not at least move your head to the song as it plays. My personal favorite section of the EP is the outro to “Cloud Drop”, which adds a feeling of excitement and acceleration to the end of said track. It’s always nice to add some driving energy to close off a track!
Final track “Grow” is my personal favorite. It is more atmospheric, with not too much variation taking place in the guitar riffs, but still maintains a nice groove thanks to the drumming. By being rather minimalistic, it sets a tranquil and peaceful tone. The spacey mood is a nice contrast to some of the other tracks, avoiding monotony and making Skylight a bit more versatile as a whole. A very fine way to close off the EP, “Grow” doesn’t linger on to the point where the listener gets too tired.
Sweet New Addition to the Instrumental Scene
This was a very fun listen, with lots of twists and turns in the ways that Bassett wrote his songs. It also stands out as being very well-written without being oversaturated with technicality and verbose instrumentals. A lot of instrumental bands nowadays like to focus on technicality, and sometimes that may mar the songwriting of the artist; however, the opposite is the case when it comes to Flicker Rate. The music is simple, short and sweet. It focuses on the atmosphere of happiness and peace, which in turn makes the listener happy. Flicker Rate is a project with a lot of potential, and I hope that they find their prominence in the music world. Skylight is a very refreshing release in the instrumental scene. Best wishes go out to Bassett for future releases!
Notable Tracks: “Grow”; “Cloud Drop”
FFO: Polyphia, Ichika, TTNG