Release Date: Jun 06, 11
The earth has journeyed around the sun six times since the people inhabiting this planet last (and first) heard from Londoner Tom Vek. Positive, yet vague, in his explanation for the hiatus, Vek seems more concerned with moving forward then he does dwelling on his absence. Known to be a musical Clydesdale of sorts, laboring over his songwriting, Vek may just be a suffering perfectionist.
Leisure Seizure, the second release by Vek, is crammed with looping beats and tech-soaked melodies generally contrasting Vek’s signature flat, tired vocals. Vek’s garage-produced, Jimmy Tamborello-esque punk-funk and clever lyrics effectively create a well-constructed foundation to most of the tracks on Leisure but they do so out of necessity. Vek’s vocal’s limited range force him to overcompensate. This doesn’t become a deficiency in the album, however, until after you’ve plowed through the first five tracks. The back-end of the album sags into a pulsing boredom as the novelty of Vek’s quirks wears off.
“Chore” and “World of Doubt” are the album’s bright spots with “Aroused” not far behind. “Chore” has Vek flexing his lyrical muscle as he drones on about the exhausting nature of life’s subtly trying moments. His deliberately uninspired singing matches the emotion he is trying to evoke but he does so in an ironically fresh and engaging way. “World of Doubt” has Vek chanting monotonously over a guttural riff and sounding similar to Cake’s Brian McCrea. It’s a dark, doom-inspired track that centers on self-doubt.
Over the span of his two albums, although being a small sample size, Vek clearly shows that he knows how to construct songs that exploit his God-given shortcomings perfectly without falling into predictability. But for now, those songs are exceptions to the rule. A fully-formed album could be pending. But with Vek’s sense of time, the earth may be engulfed by the sun by then.