Evert Snyman- Hot Mess (Album Review)
On Hot Mess, Evert Snyman creates stoner psych rock caked in a layer of desert sand that can be thoughtful and also a little rough around the edges at times. Hailing from South Africa and no stranger to the stoner rock scene of South Africa, Evert Snyman has been performing with the band Ruff Majik, who explore a louder side of metal-tinged stoner rock music. Evert Snyman uses his solo work to showcase his eclectic range of influences, creating this sound that puts Evert in a league of his own. Hot Mess takes everything you know about stoner music and gives the listener a new perspective, drawing upon more accessible influences that have touched Evert in the past, as his vocals and some of the song structuring sounds highly reminiscent of 2000’s alternative rock bands such as Queens of the Stone Age only wrapped in with an even more psychedelic edge. It’s the type of album that gives you something familiar one second, but the next, throws you out into the desert with nothing to drink but your own saliva, if you have any left.
Hot Mess is the sort of record that you can tell the person who recorded it had quite a lot of fun recording it and being on their own, relying on their personal creative powers. The leadoff track to the album ‘The End of Time’, is a perfect example of this, and probably gave me one of the most memorable first listens of any track that I have heard off of any project in the year 2021 thus far. The opening moments remind me very heavily of a few Tame Impala tracks, but as the song gets further along, Evert Snyman sells the listener into this gorgeous transformative experience, with catchy hooks and plenty of twists and turns to keep the listeners on their toes. It’s the type of track that makes me wish I had a radio show, because I would play this song so often, as it’s that good, and really feels like a song that Evert Snyman has had the desire to release, but never had the project to release it under.
Evert not only gets to have heavy moments on this album, but there are some more straightforward songs that carry psychedelic tendencies, but don’t get as carried away in their psychedelic nature. The track ‘Consummate’ rings to mind as Evert lets his voice carry this track under a light acoustic strum and some slight percussion. It’s the sort of track an album like this needs, as Evert essentially uses this track as a way to hold the listener in place. Up till now, the tenth track off the album, Evert has been ascending the listener to the clouds and uses ‘Consummate’ as a way to force us to hold us in the sky for a minute and look down on the specs of dust that once resembled us moments ago.
Hot Mess isn’t concerned about genre specific characteristics, as it’s a record that acts as a space for someone to truly explore their unique voice after years of being in a band with their own specific sound, and that’s really what I truly do appreciate about it. Evert Snyman lets his walls down and gives us a creative spectacle, and shows us what he’s been obsessed with as a creative over these 11 tracks of catchy psych rock tracks. It’s the sort of album that does feel a bit like an outlier in the spectrum of stoner rock, and this causes more of a gravitational pull to it for me.
Favorite tracks: End of Time, Consummate
Least favorite tracks: Cleaner Than God, Burn
Listen to 'End of Time', off of Evert Snyman's new album, Hot Mess, below: