Cubicolor happened when Peter Kriek and Ariaan Ollieroock teamed up with UK vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Tim Digby-Bell in 2017. Their debut album ‘Brainsugar’ received international acclaim with bragging rights to over 40 million streams. As a three-piece live band, Cubicolor is able to showcase their wizardry at manipulating and texturing sound. Cubicolor continues their climb up the charts with the bands sophomore album, Hardly A Day, Hardly A Night and the new single Rituals.
Amsterdam-based producers Ariaan Olieroock and Peter Kriek, and British singer-songwriter Tim Digby-Bell, Cubicolor are a band that smartly delivers conventional instruments alongside synth-driven melodies and thought-provoking songwriting. As I listened to them for about the dozenth time I struggled to compare them to any other band, they have a Cubicolor sound, but I eventually heard a bit of Low Roar in the mix, and that’s a good thing.
Their newest LP Hardly A Day, Hardly A Night comes four years after Brainsugar, their powerful debut that solidified Cubicolor as a formative force in underground electronica, accruing over 40 million streams, press from Mixmag, RA, and DJ Mag, and overwhelming support from the likes of Dixon, Ame, Tale Of Us, Joris Voorn, and Kölsch.
Thematically and visually inspired by impermanence and the cyclical nature of time, Hardly A Day, Hardly A Night can be seen as a culmination of seminal moments in the bands’ past few years. One significant moment being the completion and subsequent scrapping of their proposed second album in early 2018, as Digby-Bell recalls:
“We got home and listened to it, then got on the phone with each other and decided to drop the whole thing. The next week we went back into the studio and started again. We didn’t keep anything, we shut ourselves on the boat in Amsterdam where we work and didn’t stop until we made the record we wanted to make.”
This unwavering dedication to sincerity is reflected in the emotions and sound of Cubicolor’s final record. Poignant lead single ‘Points Beyond’ reflects on the loss of Digby-Bell’s close friend, whilst second single ‘Wake Me Up’ explores our transient sense of identity. Instrumentals such as ‘Prelude’ and ‘Pale Blue Dot’ are imbued with these powerful themes in their arrangements, particularly evoking the sense of uncertainty that the band felt during the album writing process:
“There were a lot of moments when we weren’t sure we’d ever find what it was we were looking for. On the way, we lost friends, lost loves, battled health issues, lost an album, lost each other and came back together again. Looking back now it was pretty crazy but the world keeps spinning and I guess we just didn’t want to put out anything that wasn’t true to ourselves as a band, and the very best we can do as musicians, no matter how long it took.”
Hardly A Day, Hardly A Night tells the story of Cubicolor, painting a provocative but relatable picture of their evolution as a band.
The band will celebrate the album release by taking their live show to festivals around the world in the summer of 2020, I do hope they appear in my home town, as well as your’s because I think hearing them live would cement my attachment to their music.
The album is available to pre-order now, digitally, on CD and on limited edition 2×12” mirror board gatefold vinyl: anjunadeep.lnk.to/CHADHANpr
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Review by Norman @ WeatheredMusic.ca