“Strange” is usually seen as an insulting word; if you wanted to call someone “strange” without offending them, you’d address them as “eccentric.” This isn’t the case for the French avant-garde artists in 6:33. They happily embrace the weirdness by dubbing their genre “Strange Music” on their Facebook page, and it really shows. Deadly Scenes can easily be likened to a dark carnival found in the Goosebumps universe, transforming industrial, bossa nova, metal, and symphonic music into a living, breathing creature.
“Hallelujah,” the album’s opening track, starts with a deceptive church choir, but is quickly replaced with a dark, swing break. The song sees metal drums providing the backbone for punchy big band horns and staccato xylophones during the choruses, and jazzy pop punk beats under the harmonious gang vocals of the verses. 6:33 channel their inner-Rammstein in “The Walking Fed,” an industrial piece that has sinister textures and tribal beats, as well as hints of reggae thrown in to the mix. The refrain acts as if the cast of The Lion King joined Trent Reznor in the studio.
“I’m A Nerd” is quite possibly the strongest song on Deadly Scenes. Poppy chorus melodies go head-to-head against Serj Tankian-meets-Danny Elfman instrumentation, creating an oddly satisfying dissonance. Accented vocal/instrumental punches are heard throughout the G minor piece, adding that classic big band jazz sound that was heard in “Hallelujah.” The ending of the song is highlighted by massive synth textures and a disco slap bass/drum beat, bringing back that same oddly satisfying dissonance from the chorus of the song.
Track seven, “Last Bullet For A Golden Rattle,” begins with acoustic guitar noodling reminiscent of The Eagles’ performances of “Hotel California” on the Hell Freezes Over tour. At about one minute in, the band begins to join the acoustic guitar, transitioning from classical Spanish guitar to country, however, 6:33’s penchant for chromaticism is reintroduced to the mix. The song is mostly instrumental, with light vocal “oohs” and “ahs” fading in and out of the background for most of the second half. “Lazy Boy” is a direct contrast to “Last Bullet For A Golden Rattle,” opening with the sounds of deep space. Even after the song drops, the spacey element is still present in the synth organs’ chord structures. “Deadly Scenes,” the final track, is made up of prog-heavy verses and instrumental breaks; it’s a fitting end for the album, as it incorporates all of their musical influences into a 13-minute reprise.
Deadly Scenes is a freak show of various genres and avant-garde artists. 6:33 have taken the best components of their progenitors and created a Frankenstein’s Monster, ready to rampage and leave some audial chaos in its wake.
In A Word: Eccentric