Featured Album: A Trip to Soda Island.
Wondrous tales, symphonies of sound, immersive imagery. Ground-breaking and boundary-pushing aesthetic, sonic, and written fantasy, interwoven in beautiful cohesion. Welcome to Soda Island.
A self-described “Internet Oasis,” Soda Island is a collective like none other, and its inhabitants span the entire globe, including Aussies Spire and Arian Cook, Canada-based Ramzoid, German duo Avionics, England native Refraq, and Izzard from the United States. (FYI, further releases not included on “A Trip to Soda Island” from Swedish Grynpyret, and Xander Lewis, also from the UK, can be found on the group’s SC page.)
The collective’s debut album was, for many producers and fans, the most highly anticipated project of the year – and boy, did it ever live up to those lofty expectations. The full magnitude and profundity of Soda Island may be lost on those unfamiliar with the narrative and context which underpins it, so here’s a quick catch up.
The group’s site features the map, shown above, of – you guessed it – Soda Island.
But what may not be immediately apparent is that the landmarks in the map are each represented by a song that perfectly captures their essence. Boba Beach, Petal Falls, Port Town… each of the island’s wondrous destinations have their own unique story, carefully crafted with boundless imagination and wonderment. For instance, the track description for Ramzoid’s Nature Nature reads as follows:
One of the first things we notice when leaving the shores is the incredible variety of plants and creatures that inhabit the island…The Underwater Library is a huge archive of documents and tales regarding the Sod-Abiogenesys (The Creamy Bang), The Mono / Stereo Age, The Hertz Division and the Wi-Fi Pinnacle erection. The complex biology that distinguishes every living creature is classified and analyzed for its function and features, as well as its ‘spectral echo’ – On Soda Island every atom of matter has a sonic counterpart…
Each song on the album features some of the tightest production you’ll ever hear. But what is most impressive is the fact that – in spite of the wildly different atmospheres and ambience created by each track – the album, as a body of work, remains in a state of complete togetherness. It tugs at your heartstrings, runs shivers down your spine, and, ultimately, leaves you grinning ear to ear.
Indeed, while all seventeen songs on “A Trip to Soda Island” are fantastic and innovative in their own right, it is the combination of all its storytelling which makes this project a true game changer. Finally, the album’s artwork, all provided courtesy of Funi, enhances, accentuates, and perfectly accompanies the music.
The album’s songs feature everything from lush future saws to delicately treated vox (including rare but perfectly complementary appearances from other vocalists), beautiful keys to string melodies, growling and bass-heavy electro synths to ornate, unique, crazily programmed, and highly distinctive percs throughout. Ultimately, the combination of these elements leads to a unique, diverse catalog of chill ballads and heavy bangers which all nonetheless fit the mood of the project perfectly.
The full album can now be streamed from Spotify. Be sure to give it a listen and go back through the Soda Island SC (and its track descriptions) to discover more about this oasis if you haven’t already.
Show Soda Island some love: