Mart Avi: Vega Never Sets (Porridge Bullet) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Mart Avi

Vega Never Sets

Porridge Bullet

Mar 02, 2021 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Mart Avi isn’t one for standing still or looking to the past for inspiration. Which is just as well because his grandiose visions of futuristic landscapes and all that encompasses them makes him one of the most unique artists on the planet today.

Hailing from the village of Vara in Estonia, Avi’s otherworldliness has seen him release five very different albums to date. Both sonically and lyrically. Indeed, it’s nigh on impossible to pigeonhole Mart Avi to any one specific genre, never mind throw in lazy comparisons with any other artists past or present.

Of course, the real beauty of Mart Avi’s chameleonic axis to creativity comes with the live experience. It’s partly theatric and conceptual in places, but never predictable or staid and always captivating. It’s difficult to walk out at the end of a Mart Avi show without feeling awestruck. Songs become vignettes, each and every one doubling as a mini-soundtrack for the scene played out on stage.

Indeed, one of the most joyous facets with Avi is seeing him perform in the flesh, which is something that sadly won’t happen for the foreseeable future. So, while Vega Never Sets feels like an obtuse David Lynch score in placestake the dreamy instrumental “Avirex” for example. Other parts bare all the hallmarks of a modern day Scott Walker or even George Michael. Future pop for the next generation to savor if you must. Not that this one is passing up on such an alluring offer either.

Dalliances with 1980s influenced soul and funk—right down to the lavish production—coupled with Avi’s urge to experiment and go one step beyond proliferate Vega Never Sets’ very core. What saves the album from becoming a pastiche is the intricate care and attention paid to each individual piece. The epic “Firefly” being a point in question, where Avi flirts between the autobiographical and vividly imaginable for the song’s narrative.

Equally dazzling is the closing “Vega,” a five minutes long electronically tinged torch ballad that finds Avi at his most somber (“The stage is blind yet I shall realign”) over an atmospheric of squelching beats that wouldn’t sound out of place on a Burial or Boards of Canada record.

Vega Never Sets is a challenging listen at times, but one that’s worth persevering with as the rewards are infinite. It represents another entrancing addition to Mart Avi’s ever consistent canon. (www.martavi.bandcamp.com)

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 6/10



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