IGORRR – Spirituality And Distortion

IGORRR – Spirituality And Distortion

I have to agree with our chief editor, Andrea Chirulescu, that IGORRR makes some of the most bizarre music in recent memory. Various non-metal elements work together to carry on genuinely metal fabric to non-metal ends, which some may find amusing but I would not call these 14 tracks songs by any stretch of imagination, rather products of boundless creativity.

IGORRR is a product of one Frenchman, Gautier Serre, who claims to suffer (?) from synesthesia, in his case, perceiving music as colors, and that almost certainly accounts for the plethora of influences in IGORRR’s music. Gautier named the band after his gerbil IGORR, adding one more "R" for a more difficult pronounciation. Having formed his project, Serre released 2 demos, Poisson "Soluble" (2006) and "Moisissure" (2008) followed by 2 studio albums "Nostril" (2010) and "Hallelujah" (2012) (with 2010 "Baroquecore" EP in between the two), as well as "Maigre With Ruby My Dear" EP (2014), before morphing into a full group with addition of vocalists Laurent Lunoir and Laure Le Prunenec and drummer Sylvain Bouvier for the recording of "Savage Sinusoid" (2017) and this, the 4th album, "Spirituality and Distortion".

I don’t know about its predecessors but "Spirituality And Distortion" is one infernal ride. Since Gautier has synesthesia (as probably do I), every color has a musical tone. This is somewhat comprehensible if you just consider 16 basic Microsoft Word TM colors, but mindful of the fact that there could be as many as 256 colors perceived by the human mind and that, again, each color has a different tone in Gautier’s, well, now we’re starting to get scared. What compounds this impression is IGORRR’s ability to pack tons of different sounds and moods in some 4 minutes in such a way that you’re not even sure whether you’ve actually heard a particular part or it was a product of your imagination stimulated by the insane composure of the music. Elements of industrial, folk, opera, movie score, techno, deathcore, black metal and acapella, as well as disco synth a’la Depeche Mode drive male/female vocalisations and growls (the latter probably just male) in the configurations vaguely recalling Ministry or System Of A Down, but more insane, more intricate and definitely more Middle Eastern-Arabic sounding. Next to guitars, the piano, the violin, the accordion and, kid you not, bleating goats (Kung-Fu Chèvre), are used to enhance the sound and/or further confuse you, while their arrangments affect the track quality, with "Nervous Waltz", the video single"Camel Dancefloor", "Parpaing", "Paranoid Bulldozer Italiano", "Barocco Satani" and "Polyphonic Rust" the highlights and "Overweight Poesy" the least impressive of the bunch.

While no one can deny that Gautier Serre is an extremely talented musician with a huge vision unrestrained by genre or style boundaries, he does not strike me as a good songwriter. In fact, these are instrumentals with vocals added for good measure. "Spirituality And Distortion" has a tremendous potential but in the end IGORRR has more fun than focus in creating something worth spending hours of engagement. For these reasons the score is just.