hiçamahiç – Düşünürüm

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It’s dark, it’s spooky, and it sounds mostly DIY. “Düşünürüm” is the debut album by the Istanbul-based shoegaze band, hiçamahiç. On this record, the band pulls together sounds from the international wave of grunge that erupted in the 90s, primarily, My Bloody Valentine, The Cranberries, and Nirvana.

Artist: hiçamahiç
Album Title: Düşünürüm
Label: Mevzu Records
Release Date: May 1st, 2024
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Social Media: @hicamahicband on insta

Written by Tony Le Calvez

It’s dark, it’s spooky, and it sounds mostly DIY. “Düşünürüm” is the debut album by the Istanbul-based shoegaze band, hiçamahiç. On this record, the band pulls together sounds from the international wave of grunge that erupted in the 90s, primarily, My Bloody Valentine, The Cranberries, and Nirvana.

The opening track, “İyi Şanslar!” simmers like a Nine Inch Nails intro; the heavy-handed guitar plucking is soaked in a never-ending reverb that blends the hanging notes together like a thick mist. The mist fades away leaving the listener in silence, until the next track, “Durdurdum,” hits you in the face like a brick through a glass window.

Pulling heavily from the sound of My Bloody Valentine’s, “Loveless,” “Durdurum” is a short piece of shoegaze that demonstrates that “wall-of-sound” noise that is crucial to getting an authentic shoegaze aesthetic. With vocals reminiscent of Robert Plant, wailing in the background, it gives the track a layer of heavy-metal gloss.

The next track, “Son Veda” picks back up the guitar tones and ambiance of the introductory track, but with the addition of wispy vocals that remind me of Dolores O’Riordan of The Cranberries, or Mylène Farmer. By this point in the album, the DIY sound of the record becomes more obvious, but that’s not a knock against it. The necessary use of compression is holding back a bit of “POP!” but everything sounds clear, clean, and perfectly balanced.

This is followed by “Vazgeçme,” which highlights one of this project’s greatest strengths: the distribution of structural variety through distinct musical passages. Across every track, the songwriting travels across different bridges and verses, each separate and unique, keeping every song fresh and diverse. The cherry on top is that despite each song having its own personality and characteristics, they’re all tied together by a consistent sound palette and general aesthetic.

The band shakes things up a bit on “Uzun Yollar,” putting down the electric guitars and opting for an acoustic bit. The torrents of reverb-soaked vocals fall on both sides of the mix like gentle waterfalls, while the acoustic guitar and shaker keep the song moving and evolving. The track devolves over-time with the vocals transforming into what sounds like either a violin bow on the strings or a goat in heat, but my only criticism for the track is that the guitar and shaker get out of sync around the 4-minute mark, and by then the song has gone on for a bit too long already anyway.

The final leg of the project takes a subdued direction, starting with an electronic remix of their single, “Kaybolacağız.” Reminiscent of Trent Reznor’s electronic work, the track sounds industrial, harrowing, and sharp; like ice-skating on the edge of a mile-long razor blade with a few beep-boops to boot. This is followed by a cover of the Nirvana song, “Sappy,” but good luck recognizing it. The song, despite having a near-identical distortion on the guitar, sounds wildly different and right in-line with the rest of the album’s established tone. The guitars sound big and full, and the shoegaze rendition of this punk deep-cut is riveting for two and a half-minutes until it deescalates into an almost ambient structure that reminds me of the loading screen for Red Dead Redemption 2.

The closing track, “Sonsuza Dek!” sounds as if I were falling down a wide well, into a shadow-inhabited darkness, surrounded by the floating ghosts of Victorian children. The downstroke guitars bury me deeper and deeper into the abyss, while the child-like vocals lullaby me into a sleep I fear I will never wake from. It’s haunting and conclusive; an astounding way to finish off the record.

“Düşünürüm” has every component of a strong debut album, and it demonstrates that the group has found their sound. Whether they choose to evolve or refine their sound on their next project is yet-to-be-determined, but whichever direction they choose, the craftsmanship and character of this record is demonstrative of a strong creative vision and a well-footed foundation to spring-board from into their next project.







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