Long Island-based band Sir Cadian Rhythm sounds like a concept band. With their elaborate name and blending of unlikely genres, some might mistake them for a fad or a one-trick pony. Nothing could be further from the truth, however, as this group has managed to create something truly unique, polished and heartfelt in their debut self-titled EP. After listening to this extraordinary work, both their music and their band name make sense in a way that is surprising and natural at once.
Circadian rhythm refers to an internal clock many scientists believe humans have which dictates sleeping and waking patterns. The band Sir Cadian Rhythm came up with their name by applying a similar idea to music. They believe humans have the same innate need for patterns in music and sound for optimal creative function. This is not just hipster speculation, either. The members of the band come from diverse backgrounds but are all very well-studied in music and music science, so much thought was clearly put into the name Sir Cadian Rhythm.
With Julliard graduates, storied musicians and musical theater actors in the band, Sir Cadaian Rhythm is not just an over-complicated name made up by some kids trying to impress. The band’s sound is an interesting and unexpected mix of early 2000s indie rock, 90s-era funk and big band jazz. This unique blending of genres along with the exceptional musical talents of each member has allowed Sir Cadian Rhythm to create a release which does not sound like anything else in indie rock today.
Sir Cadian Rhythm opens with “Flood of XIV,” a modern indie piece of excellent quality which may remind listeners of Incubus or Interpol. Singer Jack Weppler’s voice sounds similar to Brandon Boyd’s but the difference, as so often is the case, is in the details. Weppler is able to change and adapt his vocals to the diverse sounds the rest of Sir Cadian Rhythm puts together. The song opens with a heavy tribal beat courtesy of drummer Keith Miller. Richard Cluxton’s heavy funk bass is also introduced here, another highlight of Sir Cadian Rhythm’s unique style. Alex Laudini’s guitar melody parallels the bass, also a novel choice when it comes to rock, but it is highly effective in helping to showcase both the bass and the vocals.
“Holly’s on Fire” brings out the jazz and funk element of Sir Cadian Rhythm’s style even more, as the musical track hearkens back to swing and big band-era jazz. “Ouroboros” is a tense, slightly dark track which features Laudini’s guitar prominently in jazz solos. It is an interesting combination, since the rest of the track is firmly rooted in indie rock. Again, the mix may seem unexpected but the accomplished musicians in Sir Cadian Rhythm make it work. “Run Around Town” is heavy on the funk and allows Cluxton and Miller to really show their chops in that genre. The bass lines in many of the tracks on the album may remind some listeners of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and their legendary bassist, Flea.
The highlight of Sir Cadian Rhythm comes in the closing song, “Villian Fear.” This song is the apotheosis of the sound Sir Cadian Rhythm is trying to achieve and it is beautifully executed. In this case smooth jazz is the base music, and the backing track ebbs and flows between verse and chorus as Weppler shows the versatility of his voice by changing it to a crooner style to suit the music and mood. A muted trumpet rounds the whole piece out as all of these elements come together. The quality of this track and the beautiful composition is unparalleled by anyone in modern music today, save the likes of Sting or another rock legend.
To say Sir Cadian Rhythm will be huge is not an exaggeration. The quality of the music they have released in such a short time bodes very well for this talented bunch. Sir Cadian Rhythm’s exquisite work on this debut EP shows that the band has the musical chops to back up their lofty name. Sir Cadian Rhythm’s first EP can be streamed or purchased on their Bandcamp page or on iTunes via their website. They also have a YouTube page full of acoustic cover mash-ups. All links are listed below in “Sources.”
Review by Layla Klamt