Everything about Superorganism is weird.
It’s a multi-country clump of eight artists making beautifully strange indie electronic pop, headed by a 17-year-old girl named Orono. They’re the “Shiba Inu doing a backflip” of music: charming, cute and impossible to enjoy without the power of the World Wide Web. They first landed on my radar in early 2017 when the immensely catchy “Something For Your M.I.N.D.” burst onto the indie scene, a sample-driven soothing kickoff for the group. The hype train continued to build throughout the rest of the year with their kooky sound matching pace for pace with that surrealist year. Singles continued to drop, including the late millennial anthem “Nobody Cares.” I dug them and I dug them hard. Orono’s talk-sing mesh was music to my faux-Pitchfork ears.
As the days ticked closer to their full album debut, I was starting to get worried. “Will they live up to the strength of their singles?,” I wondered. I’ve been burned by the indie-hype circuit before when stellar singles lay the breadcrumb trail to an underwhelming filler-filled album. I prayed Superorganism wouldn’t fall down that hole.
But goddamn, they didn’t. They’ve pulled my favorite album of the young year thus far.
In an era of bloated albums, “Superorganism” (the album is self-titled, like many debuts) is a tight 10 songs, and there isn’t a major misstep. It’s rare for me to say that about many albums I love, and for a collective to pull off this type of consistency on their first go is insanely impressive.
Also, this album is lush. The synths that are stacked onto almost every track are velvet. I was studying for a midterm yesterday while listening to this and it was nearly impossible because I constantly wanted to fall backwards into the soundscape of “Nai’s March” and fall asleep. This review took me twice as long to write as I expected because this album’s high when listening makes it hard to focus on anything at all, even when that focus is on itself.
I commemorate this album for staying true to the strangeness that gave the group its start. There’s a song about prawns, aptly named “The Prawn Song.” With lyrics like “Oh, have you ever seen the prawn cause a world war?/Have you ever kissed a prawn; got a cold sore?,” it’s an off-kilter interlude in the album that everyone (besides kosher people) can enjoy.
I love this album. Love it, love it, love it. And the more I listen to it, the more I indulge in the electronic eccentricity that Orono and her friends bring to the table. The hype train has arrived, and I don’t expect it to depart anytime soon.
Superorganism’s worldwide tour hits the U.S. later this month. They hit closest to campus when they come to Boston on April 1, but don’t be fooled - they’re for real.
Daniel Cohn is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.