Have you ever found yourself at an art exhibit, standing in front of one piece, immersed in a sense of timelessness? Your eye at one moment notices the shapes of the brush strokes, at another moment the negative spaces between the shapes, at the next moment the nuances of the color palette or the varying textures and movements of the oil on the canvas. The more you look, the more you see.
A young trio of musicians based in London, Arliston has offered us just such a piece in their newest release Centre. This is not a pop song to take lightly with the windows rolled down. This is a whole body, immersive experience. The alt-pop composition is vibrant with stunning layers of guitars, electronic textures of every sensation, and the human vulnerability of the piano weaving in and out of the lush soundscape. I will admit, I often feel a bit lost with too much experimentation, maybe even a bit anxious, that I may be losing my way. But here, Arliston masterfully pushes the listener into new and refreshingly unexpected realms of sonic combinations while keeping anchored in a strong, stabilizing percussion. I could stand in front of this for a long, long time and still not hear it all. The more I hear, the more I want to hear.
It’s the fruit of three talented artists (Jack, Jordi and George) collaborating from diverse musical backgrounds. Jack’s lead vocal work is rich in emotion, erupting from his gut, reaching upward to the heights and down into the Centre. George and Jordi enhance the raw emotion of Jack’s vocal performance with intuitive and stunning textures of guitar (George) and drums (Jordi).
Accompanying the track is a newly released (October 15, 2021) video starring Gee HIrst (featured in the hit show Vikings). The video is as rich artistically and emotively as the music. Set in a surreal room, Hirst personifies the tension and struggle of our deepest internal battles.
Formed in 2018 from various regions of the UK, Arliston works out of London and has drawn attention from Clash Magazine, The 405 and KaltBlut as well as BBC Radio 1.