Edictum / Passage Back
Last year's Edictum album, Era, was a solid synthwave entry. Passage Back has proven that it was just an appetizer...a sample to get you hooked. Filled with big 80's sounds that lull you into a nostalgic feel, just when you think you're coming along for a familiar ride, Edictum turns the creativity dial past 10. Passage Back is filled with big, bold, and progressive sounds...taking what made the 80's so great and adding his own twists and turns. That's not all...by by blending in real, organic instruments, Edictum has something in Passage Back that feels like something so much more substantial than all the novelty albums on the market. That stuff is fast food. This is gourmet synthwave.
Let's explore why Passage Back stands out so much in the oh, so crowded synthwave world. For starters, that's getting harder and harder to do. Sadly there is a lot of copycat work going on, and that's well and good. People should seek their creative outlets and if it makes them happy, by all means, mold your work on the music that inspires you. That brings us to exhibit A). Edictum doesn't sound like anyone else. He pulls off the nostalgia, but it doesn't even sound like a specific band from the 80's. He's bringing us the feelings and the throwback vibes but there's no pandering, no winks, no wool being pulled over anyone's eyes. This is well crafted, original, and very satisfying music...I don't care what decade it was written in. The second thing, we'll call it exhibit B.) By blazing his own trail, Edictum has made some very bold and brave decisions. Trailblazing is always tough because you don't have a guidepost to follow. The chances of creating something successful also go down because there is no paint by numbers book to read from. There are some serious risks involved, but Edictum stared them down and plowed through, and we, the listeners, get to reap the rewards.
I am beyond impressed with the massive leap Edictum has made here. I don't want to downplay Era at all, but Passage Back is just an epic, larger than life album. It soars when it needs to, it pulls back and builds the intensity when it needs to, and it has a killer backbeat when it needs to as well. It checks off every single box needed for a killer album, and you know it within 3 or 4 songs in. Kudos, Edictum, and cheers on this brave new record.