Guzo – ‘Unhappy Unwell’

Icelandic solo artist Guzo reveals a gorgeous atmospheric appeal on the album Unhappy Unwell, traversing across realms of delicate ambience and emotive pop enthrallments alike. Crafted entirely in the artist’s room, the release is striking in its riveting presentation of soundscapes and thematic engrossment.

“The album came into place with the main theme being unhappiness and kind of reaching into every corner of that emotion from fear, bitterness, sadness, anger, disappointment, etc.,” Guzo explains. “There’s songs that are based on me and how I feel and others that are more exaggerated to create a more impactful story.”

“Fight or Flight” opens the album with a showcase in gradual atmospheric engrossment. An ambient swell takes hold as low-pitched piano lends a murky intrigue, as eerie, spacey whimpering-like effects linger in the background. A thumping rhythm section approaches, resulting in a buzzing synth-touched intrigue. The incorporation of heady percussive elements follows the chilling, opening soundscape with enjoyable precision and cohesion. Unhappy Unwell gets underway with enthralling success via “Fight or Flight.”

A lusher, acoustic-friendly enamoring complements emotive vocals on the subsequent “Picture On The Wall,” quickly emphasizing the project’s versatility. Whereas the opener was an atmospheric stunner, “Picture On The Wall” struts a twinkling, emotive pop sound with amply melodic appeal. “Put the frame away, look the other way,” the vocals let out, hinting at the complexities of trying to move on. The track thoroughly compels.

Highlights are numerous throughout. “Hope Is Plastic Glass” echoes the opener’s aesthetic with its instrumental focus, exuding a weightless and twinkling immersion within a laid-back and hypnotic arsenal. “Transformation” meets in the middle, with its caressing electro-pop glow and steady vocal momentum, while “Peace.” closes the album in quality from with its somber strings and evolution into a beautiful late-night murkiness. Unhappy Unwell is a breathtaking atmospheric display from Guzo.

This and other tracks featured this month can be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Emerging Singles’ Spotify playlist.

We discovered this release via MusoSoup, as part of the artist’s promotional campaign.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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