All Things Being Equal represents Sonic Boom’s first album release in over 20 years. You heard that right. It’s also the first to be released by Carpark Records, home to several artists Peter Kember (AKA Sonic Boom) has produced himself.
The album shares the same name of Kember’s previous project; he remarks “I learn from everyone I work with, and I wanted to bring what I learnt into this record,” “Everybody thinks about and listens to music in different ways.”
All Things Being Equal has been in the works for over five years; the songs began as instrumental pieces in the UK and have been remixed and reworked over the years. Kember eventually moved to Sintra, Portugal where he finished the album. He explains:
“But I wanted to get out of the urban commercialised environment,” Kember explains of his move to a national park in Sintra, Portugal, which he calls “an
enchanting area famous for being inspiring.”
Being surrounded by raw idealistic nature, Kember was drawn to contemplate humanity’s role in our planet’s “critical collapse.” Concepts such as our society’s constant need to acquire greater and greater power, the relationship we have with the earth and its inhabitants, as well as the role of spirituality, inspired him to write the lyrics for the album. Take for example, “The Way That You Live”; the lyrics make it quite clear that ideas concerning how humans live, what they value and how they give back as a society in terms of love, were topics at the forefront of Kember’s mind when producing the album. Even the video’s imagery is reminiscent of human cells, which once again reminds us of the complexity of humans and our creation.
Take a deeper look, here’s the official music video for “Things Like This (A Little Bit Deeper)”:
Sonic Boom’s songs are heavily layered– when you listen to them, it’s reminiscent of a spiritual inter-galactic space journey into nature. Don’t worry I’m not sure exactly what that means either. It feels like we’re on our way home, yet simultaneously travelling very far away—I suppose that’s the exact relationship our modern society has with earth if you think about it… earth is our one and only home, yet we are at times completely disassociated from it—it makes one wonder: where is our place in this vast universe? This concept of human nature and belonging is evident throughout Kember’s entire album, but especially in songs like “My Echo, My Shadow and Me”. Take a look for yourself:
At times echoing a spooky yet instrumental sound, the drone-based tunes on All Things Being Equal provides us with a glimpse into the rather forward thinking, full-dimensional creations on Kember’s latest album. Kembler doesn’t stop pursuing the conceptualisation of his feelings on humanity with his music. The imagery in the corresponding music videos possess the same common theme of exploring humans at a deeper level. Through his imagery, we are able to see humans from a birds eye view, as well as well as up close at a cellular level— through him, we experience humans on a vast spectrum from from great distance to incredible detail. It is evident Kembler is looking at humans and humanity at all angles and even on the microscopic level. What’s more is that he wants to make it blatantly clear what he is doing, and he wants us to know. This human dissection at the mental and physical level can be seen in songs like “Tawkin Tekno”. Check out the official music video and see for yourself:
Kember says he “wanted to mix bright digital with chunky analogue.” “Certain instruments have something about their sound that touches me deep, and I’m always trying to focus as much vibe as I can into the songs.”
“Just Imagine” is a great example of this, check it out here:
If that isn’t enough to get you intrigued, I hear the deluxe version of the new album is pressed on red glow-in-the-dark vinyl, which sounds pretty cool to me!
Check out more from Sonic Boom: https://sonicboomspacemen3.bandcamp.com/
Review written by Isabella Moulton– a stylist and designer by day, and aesthetic aficionado by night. For inquiries, please contact her at: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org | Keep it groovy <3