6:33 - Feary Tales For Strange Lullabies: The Dome

6:33 - Feary Tales For Strange Lullabies: The Dome

11 songs
53:16 minutes
***** *****


It’s been six years since 6:33’s last album Deadly Scenes, and what a great piece of art that turned out to be. I guess that the lockdown must have slowed things down, but also given the musicians ample opportunity to really refine their fourth longplayer Feary Tales For Strange Lullabies: The Dome to unprecedented heights. The cover artwork and the band logo look very eighties inspired, the way we get with lots of synthwave bands these days. And while 6:33 have their eyes firmly on that exact decade, they perform with a totally different approach.

The opener Wacky Worms is a colourful, upbeat and most of all undefinable tour de force where only one thing is for sure: it will conjure a smile on your face. The only comparison I can come up with is Mr Bungle’s self-titled debut album from thirty years ago, although 6:33 are never mere copycats but just add so many different ingredients that repeated listening won’t become boring anytime soon. With lesser artists, this manner of working risks becoming a tedious mess, but somehow 6:33 keep it all together throughout the album. The following Holy Golden Boner – what a title for a song! – begins with a certain swing pattern, before the chorus proves that these guys, although they look quite fearsome, sound like the happiest bunch of people out there. Prime Focus is a tribute to Tim Burton films and might really work in a soundtrack of one of his films. If Danny Elfman doesn’t feel up to it anymore one day, Tim Burton knows where to find new composers. After the song’s soundtracky beginning, it turns into an incredible power ballad, quite cheesy, but again 6:33 make it work! And because there is nothing better than having a good time, we get more danceable material with Party Inc. and Hot Damn Chicas, the latter riding the thin line between genius and insanity, with one foot on either side of said line. Rabbit In The Hat starts like Glenn Frey’s eighties hit song The Heat Is On, but otherwise is the least exciting track on the album. Release The He-Shes has a very French techno feeling that makes you wish for normal live shows to finally come back. Downtown Flavour is a short instrumental with a dark jazz vibe that would work perfectly as a soundtrack for a noir film. Flesh Cemetery feels like a mash-up of Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer and Michael Jackson’s Thriller, whereas Act Like An Animal is a slightly heavier song. The album ends with the jazzy Hangover, leaving me with my mouth wide open.

These crazy French musicians sound less heavy from album to album, but at the same time manage to perfect their songwriting, and despite using less metal guitars, they never sound tame and harmless. Instead you get music that can be defined as irreverent and outrageous, and should appeal to every fan of Mr Bungle and everything that was dayglo bright about this inimitable decade of cheese, kitsch and above all self-confidence. Deadly Scenes received a maximum grade, and Feary Tales For Strange Lullabies: The Dome is even better, so you know the score. Let’s hope that this is only the first part of an instalment and many more great albums to follow.

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