The singular Singaporean indie rockers Subsonic Eye just dropped their latest single from their upcoming album, Nature of Things. Part post-punk, part dream pop, part new wave, “Fruitcake” is an anthemic track brimming with depth, fervor, and raw sincerity. The group of five finds new life in liminal spaces in this sneak peek of their third full length album.
“She’s a trainwreck / Nailed to ideas / Can’t break out again / I don’t really see the point,” lead singer Nur Wahidah croons over a barrage of guitars. There’s an air of weariness in her voice that fills the song with a creeping sense of indignation, which seems to perfectly suit the theme of spiritual ambiguity that characterizes the album. But to describe the execution of the song as amateur or unpolished would be an error; the tonal disillusionment surrounding Wahidah’s vocals and the roaring arrangements demonstrate tremendous musical skills and sensitivity. There’s not a ton of lyrical variety or climactic vocal moments, but when you think about the overall message of the music, you’re never left feeling like the core is incomplete. “I mean she’s walking like that / I mean she’s walking like that / With the devil in her eyes / She’s been looking right all lucid.” In a track that delves into the depths of natural spirituality and dissects the boundaries of humanity, Subsonic Eye extends a hand in the haze that reminds us of the beauty in the liminal. The human experience is unique, troubling, and beautiful all at once—“Fruitcake” doesn’t force you into any certain box of thinking, but instead thrives on this ability to exist in multiple spaces at once.
There is true technical and compositional mastery in this track. In a song that essentially repeats the same two verses in as many different shapes as it can, there’s a lot of beauty in the nuances. “She’s a trainwreck,” Wahidah exclaims first, a declaration that eventually shifts to, “She’s some trouble,” and later on, “She’s some siren.” But as much as Subsonic Eye harnesses subtle variations, the adamant drums and guitars rarely lose steam. It’s almost like a race to the finish line, except there’s no strain to be found. And when the song ends, it happens so suddenly that it just registers as a breath. For a song that leaps from the start, it’s an intriguing but fitting conclusion.
“Fruitcake” is the third track off of Subsonic Eye’s third full length album Nature of Things, coming out on January 15th, 2021. From this track, Nature of Things already sounds like a total reinvention for the Singaporean group, which puts their superb songwriting abilities on more raw display as well as revealing their more keen and subtle observations of the human experience.