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Shaven Primates’ “Birds Aren’t Real” EP: A Sonic Exploration of Alternative Thought


Hailing from Oxford, UK, Shaven Primates is a trailblazing five-piece band that defies categorization with their unique blend of dark-wave, art-rock, and proto/post-punk. Established in 2017, the band has quickly garnered attention for their boundary-pushing approach to music, seeking to challenge and redefine the confines of their genre. With their latest EP, “Birds Aren’t Real,” Shaven Primates embarks on a sonic journey that delves deep into human emotion and experience. Their music serves as a cathartic release, encompassing a range of sentiments including fear, love, and anger. Drawing inspiration from a diverse range of musical influences, such as the Velvet Underground, Kate Bush, Tool, Prodigy, Yes, Clash, Bowie, Porcupine Tree, and Pink Floyd, Shaven Primates infuse their own unique style and passion into every note they create.

Embedded within the fabric of the EP are standout tracks that showcase the band’s artistic prowess and thought-provoking lyricism. “Fade Away” confronts the rise of fascism in social media, drawing inspiration from the rebellious spirit of late ’70s and early ’80s punk and post-punk. Shaven Primates intertwine these influences with contemporary synth techniques, resulting in an energetic composition that sets the stage for the album’s exploration of alternative thought. Guitarist Tom Clark’s rolling intro riff drives the song’s instrumentation, while the chorus encapsulates the emotional weight of modern-age pressures. “Fade Away” establishes the tone of the EP, introducing listeners to the societal issues and pressures that underpin Shaven Primates’ musical narrative.

In “A Decision,” the band delves into the sensitive subject of the impact of suicide on those left behind. Through a gothic sound reminiscent of the early ’80s, Shaven Primates craft a sonic landscape that reflects the profound gravity of this dire event. The inclusion of symphonic and orchestral layers enhances the emotive quality of the track, inviting listeners to contemplate the ripple effects of such decisions. “A Decision” adds a poignant and introspective layer to the album, emphasizing the need for compassion and understanding when faced with the complexities of mental health.

Another compelling track, “Silicon Implants,” serves as a powerful social commentary on the current state of affairs. Shaven Primates skillfully weave together references to historical events and contemporary observations, exposing recurring patterns and challenging the status quo. Through rapid blues-infused beats, deliberate keys and guitar work, and an up-front bass line that demands attention, the song prompts listeners to critically analyze the manipulation of language, the distortion of norms, and the deceptive nature of information. “Silicon Implants” becomes a sonic vehicle that encourages us to question prevailing narratives and engage in independent thought.

Shaven Primates, the dark-wave, art-rock, proto/post-punk ensemble from Oxford, UK, is a force to be reckoned with. Through their boundary-pushing sound, they challenge traditional musical categorizations and embark on a journey of self-expression and exploration. Their latest EP, “Birds Aren’t Real,” stands as a testament to their unwavering commitment to crafting music that resonates deeply with listeners. With standout tracks like “Fade Away,” “A Decision,” and “Silicon Implants,” Shaven Primates demonstrate their artistic prowess and thought-provoking lyricism. Each track adds a unique dimension to the album’s exploration of alternative thought, from confronting the rise of fascism to contemplating the impact of suicide and providing social commentary on the state of affairs. Through their innovative soundscapes and evocative compositions,

Shaven Primates invite us to question established narratives, embrace independent thought, and engage in a cathartic musical journey of introspection and understanding.