I’ll be honest, I’m usually really turned off when I see an all-caps artist name with a V used in place of a U (or similar conventions like skipping all the vowels or whatever), but it just so happens that my father was in Bratislava for the last couple of weeks teaching a course at the Uni there, so I overcame my bias and checked the submission when I saw the Slovakian connection. I’m really glad I did. Bratislava-based FVLCRVM is the kind of artist who–at least from the outside looking in–seems like he’s drawing from a really deep well of natural talent and innate energy. As I mentioned the other day, I’m also a little dubious about stuff people label as hyperpop (to his credit I haven’t seen FVLCRVM himself use that term, but I’ve seen others do it). In this case, that label is really reductive. For one thing, a browse through FVLCRVM’s back catalog reveals a pretty broad stylistic approach, but also what makes these songs good is really the songwriting, not the packaging. This is just solid pop music, as far as I’m concerned, so it’s no real wonder that his work remains good across his genre shifts over time.
I’ve selected two tracks for you, but I recommend checking all his previous work too. And if you couldn’t tell how much I like the first song, I’m posting it despite the fact the only public embeddable version is a youtube stream. It takes a lot for me to get over my fastidiousness when writing here, but “Till”–released a few weeks ago on a major label (that’s why there’s no proper public stream available)–is truly jubilant 90s breakbeat revival pop. It’s simply sparkly enough for me to just get over myself and post it anyway. Definitely do yourself a favor and listen through until that key shift around 2:30. The second one, “Wildfire”, is about a year old, and as good as the first, but is also a good example of FVLCRVM’s genre-chameleon quality. It’s hazier and warmer–almost grunge music at times–but it’s no less of an earworm, and still somehow open and energetic despite all of its warble. I suspect it’s only a matter of time before we see a top40 hit stateside written by this guy (if we haven’t already…?).
FVLCRVM – “Till” (yt) stream above
FVLCRVM – “Wildfire” (sc)