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Metamorphic Synth and Self Exploration

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’s latest release, “Butterfly 3000”, is an intentional departure from their characteristic darker and heavier rock sound. The Melbourne-based band continues to keep fans on the edge of their seats with their unpredictable sonic tendencies.

Every time KGLW releases a new album (which, historically, are not far apart), listeners never know what to expect. This continues to ring true with “Butterfly 3000”. Compared to the microtonal, heavy and highly progressive focus and the darker themes of their previous albums, their 10-track 2021 release has a much brighter, happier synth-pop feel.

When the pandemic hit, the members of the band had to accept and adjust to the fact that they would not be able to jam and do live experimentations together in the same studio. So each of the six members had to individually create their individual contributions separately. Driven by the current global social distancing situation, the band’s 18th album was seeded from synth loops and MIDI sequences, opening up another new door to add to their seemingly limitless exploration of sound.

They’ve once again shaken their followers out of the comfort zone they thought they could settle into, and reminded them to only expect the unexpected from King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard.

The almost distinctive, strangely organic and heavily 70s-prog-influenced polyrhythmic wanderings along with fuzzy distorted microtonal electric guitar riffs of prior albums have been replaced with shinier, brighter digital loops and spacier, more futuristic textures and shapes; taking listeners on an unexpectedly different direction and a brighter, more digital auditory tangent.

On top of these layers of space-age synth textures perfectly interwoven with lighter string sounds and Michael Cavanagh’s distinctive drum sound and style, frontman Stu McKenzie drizzles brighter lyrical themes that are highly introspective. His apparent lockdown-driven subjects for this album are quite relatable, as most of us go through very similar experiences of self-analysis and contemplation during these times of isolation.

“Butterfly 3000” has added an entirely new dimension to the “Gizzverse” — a dimension of spacious and cosmic soundscapes to accompany your lucid dreams as you sleep through most of this lockdown phase of our planetary existence, while still keeping you grounded with highly relatable, navel-gazing lyrics. It is a great addition to the Aussie group’s fast-growing and ever-evolving multiverse of sounds, balled up into songs, organised into thoughtfully compiled thematic albums that are designed to be listened to as a unified experience from beginning to end.

Although King Gizzard won’t be able to perform outside of Australia any time soon, local fans can expect some special, thematically arranged upcoming performances. While Gizzard fans across the globe can expect some more new music in the works for 2021.

King Gizzard’s music is a great way to temporarily escape reality, especially in these times of social isolation. Share and recommend KGLW to your friends the next time you check in to see how they’re doing.

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