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Igorrr - Savage Sinusoid LP
Metal Blade Records
How do you even begin to describe Savage Sinusoid? Anyone familiar with the previous works of Igorrr – the brainchild of Gautier Serre – will know that to even try is impossible, while those newly introduced will find that a smorgasbord of adjectives cannot adequately convey the invention, verve, passion, playfulness and genre-smashing glee he effuses at every turn. Initially influenced by the likes of Meshuggah, Chopin, Cannibal Corpse, Bach, Domenico Scarlatti, Taraf de Haidouks and Aphex Twin, traces of these artists can be found littered across his discography, but Serre has never been interested in remaining static or merely recycling ideas, and his work has dramatically evolved accordingly. In recent years, Igorrr has also become something of a collective, rather than the work of one man alone, which has further broadened the scope of his music without sacrificing integrity. While Igorrr’s output may be initially challenging to some, Serre has no intention of baffling or alienating potential listeners.
To realize Savage Sinusoid as a completely sample-free record, Serre reunited with vocalists Laurent Lunoir and Laure Le Prunenec, and collaborated with more musicians than on any of his previous releases. While remaining the primary songwriter, Serre maintained an open-minded approach, taking on board suggestions made to him – his intention always to make the best possible album. Electronic manipulations, accordion, saxophone, sitar, harpsichord, mandolin and strings sit comfortably alongside ruthless blastbeats, chunky riffs, death grunts and soaring operatic vocals, and as chaotic as this might sometimes seem, there is no lack of heart behind everything thundering from the speakers. When it comes to vocals, Serre sends the tracks out to vocalists with an outline of what they should record, though giving them space to adapt them as they see fit, with further revisions made once in the studio. For Savage Sinusoid, alongside Lunoir and Le Prunenec, Serre recruited Cattle Decapitation’s Travis Ryan’s on “Cheval”, “Apopathodiaphulatophobie” and “Robert”, and as is evident in the approach to everything Igorrr does, the most important aspect of the vocals is the feeling behind them. “When it comes to metal screams and the operatic vocals, I have no idea what the individuals are saying. I’m only focusing on how it sounds and not what it means. It’s about the language of the heart instead of the language of the brain – plus, they are writing the texts in their own language, so I do not understand the meaning, if there is one.” The album title strongly reflects the nature of the music – the ‘Savage’ element needing no explanation, while ‘Sinusoid’ – defined as a mathematical curve that describes a smooth repetitive oscillation – refers to the experimental purpose of the music. “This is not pop music made with a commercial goal, it’s like research, a musical experience. Looking at it on a grander scale, there are also parallels that can be drawn with string theory, which unites opposing scientific concepts as to how the universe works – if you’re interested in digging into that side of things!”
Just like Igorrr’s other albums, words will always fall far short of being able to convey the inventive magnificence of Savage Sinusoid, and only through exposure can this be truly appreciated. Having realized his youthful dream of music without boundaries, Serre has been rewarded by finding a legion of the likeminded, who have embraced and taken his music to heart. Like any musician he hopes that this following will grow, something that seems inevitable in the wake of Savage Sinusoid. “My music is very personal, and I’m alw