EP review – Jersey Beat
Building upon the success and magnificence of their previous release, Of the Sun, Poland’s Trupa Trupa return with I’ll Wait, a shimmering work of psychedelically charged indie rock. The opening “Fitzcarraldo” is a living musical dichotomy, somehow simultaneously beautiful and unsettling.
The song is based on a film directed by Werner Herzog about the real life escapades of Peruvian rubber kingpin Carlos Fitzcarrald. This constant convergence of the lush and the haunting, not to mention the wildly interesting historical references made by the band through these tracks, makes I’ll Wait a scintillating and intellectually challenging listen. Grzegorz Kwiatkowski emotes the refrain, “all the way to the end of the line” (from “End of the Line”) in a manner that conveys both a childlike sense of playfulness as well as a subtle mania that demands repeat listens. Initially thrust forward by the nimble bass playing of Wojchiech Juchniewicz, the song seamlessly slides into a subdued, atmospheric realm with a tone that conveys a nursery rhyme gone terrible awry. There is a sense that something terrible is about to happen, but it is impossible to predict what exactly or when. “Invisible Door” initially strikes the listener as a 1970s psyche-pop effort as heavily compressed, almost whispered vocals meander above a bed of solemn musicianship. The song’s perceived simplicity masks a depth that reflects Trupa Trupa’s musical mission; namely, to create music that is at times claustrophobic and unnerving but always engaging. The closing title track is musically suffocating, and waves of ethereal controlled noise force Kwiatkowski’s vocals to swim against the tide while he commences with an internal battle, first declaring “I’ll find” before being told by a second, but still his own, voice, “no, you won’t”. The song is replete with nightmarish elements seemingly lucid and incomprehensible. Trupa Trupa’s willingness to address the realities of global hate, particularly the rise in anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial, gives their music an additional gravitas, but the strength of any band must be songwriting, and these four are supremely gifted.