[Album Review] Digits- Get Through
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digits

Release Date: May 19th, 2015
Label: Independent

Get Through’is the third LP release from Toronto-based electro pop synth-wizard Digits.  Quite subversive in comparison to his two previous albums which are far more extroverted in their execution, Get Through has dialled down the excitement a notch for a more internalized and reflective album.  The beats are a bit slower, and the builds a bit more minimal, allowing space to focus on lyrics and the subtleties in.   This album is more reminiscent of something you would hear from Royksopp or even Depeche Mode. Digit’s voice has that warm and haunting quality to it that makes him a perfect fit for his type of synthy production.  Simply stitched 80s drum beats, building surface tension against layers or arpeggiating synths and vocal melodies sometimes mirrored by a single piano line, the flow of this album is effortless, evidence that Digit’s has really honed in on the specifics of his brand of song.

Highlights of this album were the track “Where Do You Belong”, a melancholy melody accompanied by oscillating synth reminiscent of Tetris.  Perhaps the most upbeat and danceable of all tracks on this album, the 80s drum kicks and sunny synths are accompanied by brooding lyrics of a broken heart, almost whispered in parts.  I feel like the lyrics would verge on being too melodramatic if left in less able hands, but paired with the instrumentation they exude this kind of cheesiness and irony that works.

“Stasis”, another favorite song, begins with a sequence of four beatles-esque keyboarded chords forming the song’s foundation.  From there, everything builds in a most subtle and delicate fashion.  Digit’s voice floats dreamily above and is accompanied by a soft and delightful acoustic lick with a woody texture that compliments the cosmic sheen of the synth-y atmosphere.  You keep waiting and waiting for the song to break out in drum solos, or for the tempo to be kicked up a notch, but it doesn’t and you have to be patient.  In this case the appreciation of Stasis comes about from the patience of lingering. 

I feel like with Digit’s musical abilities, he must be very aware of his songs potential for complexity, but his refusal to venture into those realms makes us work harder as listeners to relish in subtlety and simplicity.  Having said that, maybe I have failed the test, because although I appreciated what was there, I just wanted more! It’s a serene and easy ride the whole way through, but I longed for moments to take me deeper.  However, throw on this album on for a summer drive or as some background sounds for a nice beachy day, someplace where you don’t want to think too hard about things, and you won’t be disappointed.