Beauty Hidden in Boredom
Kid Koala’s new album is a collection of ambient music that works great if you want to pick away at a task with some background noise. However, when you try to look for something deeper, it falls short. Music to Draw to: Satellite features solid singing and instrumentation. However, these musical aspects rarely are enough to make a song enjoyable throughout its entirety. Kid Koala has a knack for putting together beautiful-sounding tracks, but they can get boring rather quickly due to lethargic pacing. It’s a shame that Kid Koala’s talents weren’t able to come together more completely on this project.
Some tracks are better than others, but they all drag on slowly. They have names that allude to lofty scientific topics such as “The Observable Universe” and “The Hubble Constant.” Listening to these songs often mirrors the feeling of reading page after page of a science textbook. The songs don’t encompass the scope of these topics, rather they stay in a very small bubble that rarely evolves past its initial impression. There is a calm, soothing nature that makes Music to Draw to very pleasing to the ear, but unfortunately there just isn’t much variety, as its songs all sound rather similar to one another
If there are two things that Kid Koala gets right on the project they are (1) his choice of vocalist with Emiliana Torrini, who appears on many of the album’s tracks, and (2) his choice of acoustic, natural samples. These sounds give each song a sense of life and breadth, such as on “The Darkest Day” – which also features Torrini. This is one of the stronger tracks on the album, as it progresses and evokes a wide range of emotions. Kid Koala clearly has talent and knows how to craft a gorgeous song. However, his skills unfortunately were underutilized on this project. The album isn’t bad; it just doesn’t sound like enough thought was put into creating a strong coherent work that flows well. The songs on the album could go in any order and it wouldn’t really change things all that much. If Kid Koala can maintain his sound whilst also experimenting some more with new ideas, he could create a much better impression with his next piece of music.