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ERIK & THE WORLDLY SAVAGES - Break Free - EP REVIEW



ERIK & THE WORLDLY SAVAGES

Break Free

Koh Phangan, Thailand



Come one, come all, come many, to revel in the punk-folk stylings of ERICK & THE WORLDLY SAVAGES’ latest album, ‘Break Free!’. Great melodies, messages and moments, a wild ride from start to finish, grounded in free-forming folk rock that is alive with strings, accordions and horns. ‘Break Free!’ sings of revolt, true life and living your own way, it does so with great passion and even better instrumentals pushed ever higher by a profound vocal that I fell head over heels in love with. Songs bat you one way and slam you the other with dips and pushes in tempo and velocity, culminating in one massive - yet personal - folk-rock-ska-punk album, you will not want to miss.


ERIK & THE WORLDLY SAVAGES play with political strife and the current living crisis as themes within ‘Break Free!’. It is these ideas and realities that they implore you to break free from, to follow dreams or desires, or simply to see the world. Songs like ‘Brainwashed’ and ‘Dry Fear’ set the mood. Brash sounds that pulse, brass that warbles the bass as the vocal, like spiked treacle, oozes attitude over every unavoidable mouthful of folk. The mood is combative, it moves you to action. The songs paint pictures of familiar work/life balance issues and quality of life decline with a backdrop that an army could march to.


The instrumental here is fantastic. The mix of punk composition paired with folk instrumentals and frills gave me goosebumps. I couldn’t have told you which vocal style would fit best over top. The eclectic rhythms of the drums splashing in and out of the silence and pulling the big band back in seemed an unsurmountable cacophony. Yet they got it done. It's harsh at times but can go smooth. It's sticky-sweet and works a treat at bringing a distinct character to ‘Break Free!’ that adds so much charm and humanity to the tracks.


The mood picks up as the album progresses, with ‘Sunshine’ singing of better worlds and an urge to get out. The dark setting, uplifting direction, and standout string melodies make it one of the album's highlights. It breaks the tone up, allowing songs like ‘Glass Cage’ and ‘Leaving’ to have much bigger impacts. They twist you inside, the rolling melodies toll on your morals and call them to stand trial; such indecision, such a grind. They deliver a message, an uplifting and riling scale of sound, one that could move a generation if placed over the right ears.


‘Burn My Life’ ends the album and what a cathartic experience it has been. Short but sweet - sour-sweet. ‘Burn My Life’ explodes with emotion. Every instrumentalist gets their time in the spotlight and all have truly earned it. The playing the singing and the harmonies on offer throughout this album are endless in their quality and imaginativeness. It is a sad end, but a hopeful one. They sing and dance about the next step in the journey of life, giving up what was, to move on to what shall be.


A final note. Many people pass off albums that are ‘sad’ or ‘depressing’. Art and especially music is not designed to make you feel one way or the other, just to make you feel. If it saddens you, look inward. Why? If the music inspires those feelings within you then it has done its job and done it well. ‘Break Free!’ is not a jovial summertime jam about flings in mildewy grass or picnics by the lake. It is an album that pushes you to reflect, reveal something within yourself and really feel it. It achieves this with attitude, punctual lyrics and a tonne of talent. Would ERIK & THE WORLDY SAVAGES be as impactful without their masterful tones and textures? No, but they’d still make you feel something, they are bards after all. ‘Break Free!’ will muse your soul into the new dawn, leaving you with a spring in your step and a tune on your lips.




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