Pop music, perhaps more than most genres, is all about moving with the times. The wind of change blows through the genre faster and keener than any other musical corner and if you are not ahead of the curve, then you quickly find yourself behind it, yesterday’s news, old hat, consigned to the mix-tape of pop past.
Daniel Sarver makes music that keeps him ahead of the curve. He also has an uncanny knack for exploring all the myriad sounds and styles that comes under the broad pop umbrella. With a full album on its way, for now, it is through six recent singles that we get to view his work and doing so makes you realise that it is an album that is going to be worth the wait.
Escape Room blends slightly funky pop grooves with more clubland beats, sweet vocals and light, infectious and adventurous grooves. Its beats and buoyancy compel even the most ardent wallflower to hit the floor and make some moves. And showcasing the eclectic nature of what Daniel Sarver does, Ashamed follows, a minimal, neo-soul-pop ballad build on beguiling electronica and beautiful spaciousness. And it is this space created at the heart of the song which gives it its power. It is in these gaps that atmospherics pool and swirl reminding us that sometimes when it comes to making music it is what is not said, not played, not offered which does the real work.
Parts follows a similar path, a balance of upbeat piano and dark, hushed atmospherics, sweet harmonies and melancholic and heartfelt lyrics. By contrast, Taking You Home wanders some acoustic folk routes, blending such rootsy delicacy with more mainstream and commercial concerns. The sort of thing that the likes of Ed Sheeran would give his right arm for.
Savior switches us back into the cutting edge of electronic-driven pop, a perfect and poised affair running on skittering, almost trap-like percussive beats and shimmering sonics, highly polished and highly produced, the sound of the future, the sound of pop-to-come. And finally, we arrive at Vertigo, and an upbeat Mediterranean guitar dancing unashamedly with Latin beats and pop precision, a subtle and supple blend of world music traditions and the mainstream music world.
On the basis of these advance singles which have been sent out to test the water, the full album is going to be a real killer. A salvo of great songs, a smorgasbord of pop variety and a real showcase of where pop has been, where it is today and, more importantly, where it goes next.
[…] in your head. Not everyone is brave enough to loosen their grip on their own creations, thankfully, Daniel Sarver […]