Gotye‘s rise to worldwide prominence has been something of a shock to most people following pop music; his haunting single “Somebody that I Used to Know” has now got somewhere in the region of 250million hits on youtube and is possibly the most ingenious piece of music I’ve heard released in the last year (if not the last decade).
It tells a tale of a bitter man who looks back on his relationship through rose tinted glasses, but the real stroke of genius was the inclusion of the other side of the story; the female perspective sang by guest performer Kimbra shows that she is equally sad to see it end and that actually most of the blame lays on him. Accompanied by transfixing tunes played on the (these days way underused) xylophone padded out with a strange ambience including echos and unusual samples, “somebody that I used to know” became what appears to be an overnight sensation across the world.
Naturally, having become swept by the single myself (it has swiftly overtaken every other song in my itunes to become the most played), I quickly searched out “Making Mirrors” and found that his album was equally unique. Its fourteen tracks vary from Cee Lo Green esque pop/soul tracks (I Feel Better) to alternative rock (Easy Way Out) and feel good numbers (In Your Light). It is clear that Gotye draws his influence from a massive variety of music which at first glance may seem to be incongruous, but actually they all blend together beautifully to make an album which surprises at every turn and is a real joy to listen to.
I have to say that when I heard “Somebody that I used to Know” I didn’t imagine that I would find an artist as diverse and talented as Gotye behind it, I expected someone who’d simply got lucky with a tune and a song that appeals to the masses. It turns out that in actual fact Gotye (real name Wouter “Wally” De Backer) is a really talented musician who has been trying to make it big for years.
It is his knowledge and years of dedication and commitment to music which really shines through in his album, there are elements of music taken from styles from all around the world and from the more commonplace “western” music which shows a real love for trying something new and Gotye truly pulls it off. Making Mirrors is a must have.
Making Mirrors is out Now; available on Amazon, Itunes, Spotify and other good music sources.