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SONG PREMIERE: “Odyssey” by Shape King

March 2, 2016, reviewed by post-collegiate intern

There’s a bubbly new band in town, and you’ll never believe what they are here to say.

Shape King is the brainchild of artist/composer/inventor Raphael Peterson, a bonafide genius located in Brooklyn via Oakland. Before launching his solo project, he was involved in [lots of other projects that give him credibility and will make you like him by association.] His new song, “Odyssey” is a masterpiece of layered percussion, goofy synthesizers, and 21-st century angst.

I wanted to make a song about the Odyssey where its the twentyfirst century and Odysseus is trying to get home but he’s too distracted.”[sic]

We got distracted listening listening to the song ourselves. The song opens with a bravado of drum hits, which gives way up to an insistent groove punctuated by a slinky bass line and layered hand percussion. Think David Byrne making music on a laptop. Then, Peterson enters, narrating his Odyssey “He had a lot of time on his hands, ocean blue and burning sands…” Then I checked my facebook. A friend of mine’s sister, who I don’t really know but who posts interesting articles posted an article about how wind farms are the future but are significantly altering the migration patterns of North American birds. I was sitting in a park the other day eating a roast beef bodega sandwich and watching pigeons eat discarded french fries off the sidewalk, so this “pecked” my interest. I thought of the Canadian geese back home too. We all hated them. I googled Canada geese and saw an article about how one stole an ice cream cone from a baby outside of a Panera Bread Co. in Topeka, Kansas. I read the wikipedia page on Canada Geese too. Fascinating stuff.

After a chorus ended in the song, in which a cadre of electronic devices croons to the digital Odysseus “We got something better than that, everything you want, that which you lack…” it melted into lo-fi romp full of block-rocking beats and soaring casio melodies. I was lost in its world.

"We got distracted listening listening to the song ourselves"

I’d been staring at my computer screen for so long that I had a weird headache that started at the back of my head and moved forward? I decided to take a ten minute break. I was working from home that day, so I got up and checked the refrigerator. I’d been eating a lot of cheese lately, so I decided to eat something else. I thought that I should eat some fruit, but didn’t feel like it. I opted for a container of fat-free yogurt. I used to get the custard kind, but it kind of arbitrarily started grossing me out so I switched to the mix-from-the-bottom a couple months ago. i like it more. about halfway through the yogurt, I got bored so I went back to my computer. The song had ended. I really enjoyed it.

"Odyssey" is Shape King's followup single to the excellent "We Are Together". We are so excited for what Shape king comes up with next. Shape King.

Shape king is not playing any shows because he broke his kneecap.

He certainly has an odd way of doing things. Take a listen below: