YEDM has been following SINES, or rather, its producer Jason Wann, since 2021. With a couple of wickedly-produced, synth-forward albums under the SINES name and a cheeky side project called Blood Oyster, it would be hard not to notice the splash Wann’s made in the electronica world, especially with his female-and-human rights focus. With all his work being quite female-focused and SINES always being intended as a duo, Wann considers Gravity to be said duo’s first album. Now that collaborator, vocalist and video director Kitty Richardson is on board as the other end of this SINE-wave, which reaches from Wann’s native Portland to Leeds in northern England, this duo is ready to wave in earnest.
Gravity is a concept album, modeled after the famous novel Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said by Philip K. Dick. The album takes Dick’s story a step farther by dropping the spaceman hero back onto Earth in 2023. The tracks within are meant to be his observations of the current culture, politics and reality itself. If that sounds trippy, wait until you hear the songs and see the videos. Created mostly on Wann’s impressive collection of vintage synths and programmers, the music is produced to hearken back to the golden age of synth pop, and it’s no coincidence that a strong nod to legendary new wave group The Human League can be heard here. The English band’s first demo, “The Taverner Tape,” was also inspired and influenced by Dick’s main character in the iconic novel. Creation begets “Fascination” begets creation, as the sine wave dictates.
One of the many interesting things about Wann and Richardson is that they’ve never met and created Gravity over a 6,000 mile distance via all our lovely modern technology. While Wann was looking for vocalists on the last pseudo-SINES album, A Series of Moments, he came across Richardson on the Vocalizr app. A composer, songwriter and visual artist of some note in her native UK, Richardson seemed to instantly understand the vibe Wann was going for and not only lent her bright, Kate Bush-meets-Sarah Brightman vocals to the single “Something In the Way” but directed the video for it.
Now, with Gravity, these two kindred musical souls are stronger together. They’ve melded their bold, visceral and slightly satirical styles to create an album that’s as multi-layered and charged as it is fun and danceable. They’re working at an alarming rate, as well. Since Gravity released in early September, the pair have been churning out multimedia pieces for each track, including visualizers for nearly all the tracks on the album, as well as two music videos directed by Richardson. Similar to their music, the pair have a lush, vintage-fueled style, borrowing clips from old, spacey movies and splicing them with original art and video. There’s more than meets both the eye and ear here than spacey vibes and Warholian nightmares, however, according to Richardson.
For me, the most exciting thing about Gravity is the fact that the whole “spaceman lost in space and then returning to earth” story is a perfect allegory for my experience with autism and trying to navigate the neurotypical world. I think my main goal for my music is to communicate to others a feeling that I’m unable to express using only words.
With this new debut, the music world is just beginning to see SINES in its final form, but Gravity is only the ground floor. With loads of creativity and a solid base, now SINES can really move the way they want and it should be a fun, synth-filled ride.