Thursday, April 06, 2023

Out Of This World: Radio Vision Release the Strange and Peculiar ‘First Contact’

Step into the strange world of Radio Vision where sci-fi meets alternative, psychedelic rock in the new single, ‘First Contact’. 

Radio Vision is the brainchild of Benjamin Stephson, a multi-instrumentalist from Michigan USA. The project came to life upon the hiatus of his main project The Shook after parting ways with the band’s drummer. Focusing and specialising in long, drawn-out guitars, Stephenson shows clear influence from the likes of Pink Floyd and Jimi Hendrix showcasing a vintage style with a futuristic flair.

‘First Contact’ opens up with a funky electric guitar and bass with a strange UFO-like sound effect lingering in the background. This alien sound is noticeable from the get-go but doesn’t overshadow the catchy bass, instead, it works in unison adding a dose of confusion and allowing the listener to let their imagination wander, creating vivid and out-of-this-world imagery. 

‘First Contact’ is a complex, yet simple track and follows a double-meaning narrative. On first listen, the assumption is that it is about UFOs, strange beings, and strange worlds created through trippy studio effects including a subtle reverb. However, this is not entirely the case as according to Stephson, its main focus is the modern world and our relationship with it and how an outside observer, aliens may judge our choices. This is perfectly shown within the lyrics “Come back to find all the damage we’ve done”. 

Stephenson has a Sprechstimme vocal range, which is a combo of talking and singing where the quality of his speech is heightened and lowered in pitch contouring the inventive instrumentals adding depth and versatility. These vocals are heavily distorted and somewhat mimic an announcement on a vintage radio paying homage to ‘War of the Worlds’ by Orson Welles really saturating the interstellar themes.

Simply complex, ‘First Contact’ is the perfect homage to the 1960s yet modernises psychedelic rock perfect for those seeking a sci-fi adventure. 

Ana Joy King


Image: ‘First Contact’ Official Single Cover 

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