There is a common phrase in pop culture and in politics “Something’s Rotten In Denmark”, Denmark’s own Siamese definitely dispels that stereotype. I have never saw anything wrong with Denmark. I am going to conduct research on the origin of that expression, but first I must tell you about Siamese, who released their debut via Artery Recordings entitled “Shameless” on June 23rd!
Siamese is composed of Mirza Radonjica on vocals, Morten Bo Harris on bass, Andreas Kruger on guitars, Christian Hjort Lauritzen on violin, and Joakim Stilling on drums. Even before Artery Recordings came calling, Siamese is an award winning act, winning the “Best Hardrock Act” award at the 2012 GAFFA Awards, “Album Of The Year” via Scream Magazine, and “Album Of The Year” via Mass Movement. “Shameless” by Siamese shows that Siamese is carving a new niche for European bands in an effort to break into the North American market.
“Shameless” by Siamese starts off with somewhat creepy violins into an impressive display of ambiance before Kruger kicks in on the guitars. As the first verse kicks in, you immediately notice Mirza’s pop-tinged/soulful vocals before “Ablaze”, the opening track of “Shameless” kicks in with a catchy, yet anthem-fueled chorus, you know the kind of chorus that causes you to act out the chorus while you’re singing it and where girls proceed to scream. See, not all European bands are filled with songs about vikings, gargoyles, and sea monsters. There’s a niche for some feelgood music in Europe and Siamese is carving that niche. What I like about “Ablaze” is that each part in the arrangement serves the song, and no part in the arrangement tries to outshine the other part.
After “Ablaze”, “Shameless” kicks into “Tunnel Vision”. There’s another layer to unpack with Siamese, we witnessed the pop-rock tendencies in the first song, now we are witnessing more of an alternative, heavier emo part of the band, however, we still hear some pop-vocal harmonies and catchy arrangements about a love obsession in “Tunnel Vision”. “One Night Thing” might be a little too pop filled for those fans that subscribe to Artery Recordings, but this shows the diversity of Siamese with catchy pop-filled verses with that alternative rock type of hooks and rhythm that is a standard in an alternative rock song. “Soul_Chemicals” is the absolute standout moment of “Shameless”. The vocals sound like a mix of Adam Lambert when Mirza hits the high notes, and the chorus is powerful and the background vocals definitely enhance the power of the song.
Siamese has some layers to unpack about this band. There are some pop-fueled harmonies and arrangements in “Make It Out”, which has some cool finger-snapping and a piano arrangement during the verses of the songs, as well as a somewhat “lighter in the air” type of mood in the album closer “Never Be The Same Again”. There are some solid arrangements with alternative rock hooks and the incorporation of string arrangements and ambiance in several of the songs shows me that Siamese isn’t afraid to experiment and try new arrangements, which I feel will help them grow as a band. To be honest, with this recording, you’re either going to get what they’re trying to accomplish or you’re not going to get it. With an open mind and an open heart, you’ll find Siamese a joy to listen to, especially if you try to forget about genres and labels that fans place on each other. This album gets a 7.5 out of 10, because I feel that this band is an acquired taste, however, my palate is satisfied with this record, I recognize the potential brilliance of this band, however I do realize that not everyone is going to get Siamese. Siamese has that underground cult following type of aura about them, where those that get it will become diehards of Siamese! Please open up your mind, go in with no expectations, and give Siamese a shot! For fans of Slaves, Hands Like Houses, and Issues.
“Shameless” by Siamese
- “One Night Thing”
- “My Turn”
- “The Promise”
- “Make It Out”
- “Never Be The Same Again”
You can find Siamese at the following locations: