ARTIST: COLTON SKAGGS
Having waited on Colton to drop an album for a good few months, my anticipation first began to climax when I heard ‘falling ashes’, a melancholy, downtempo number cluttered with spidery drum patterns, a slow EDM kick drum and vocals absorbed by the tidal wave of synth. Appearing as the penultimate song on his project Decrepitude, the Slowdive-inspired track is the apex of Colton’s artist progression, but it’s a far cry from the typical sound of this album. The contrast is apparent immediately, as the pummeling, Burzum-sampling ‘born into darkness’ kicks things off savagely, the artist’s vocal abilities on full display. The animalistic growls found in this song bleed into the more trap-influenced ‘possession’. Here, the distortion is amped up and the genre-fusion evolves more subtly.
‘kill me’ is something of a catalyst for the musician, the screamo-inspired track reaches into the grimy underbelly of extreme music and emerges with something truly terrifying and bleak. ‘make a change, kill yourself’ follows, a perfect hybrid of operatic menace and crushing industrial nightmare. ‘useless fuck’ is the most lyrically transparent song, a self loathing lyrical piece that focuses heavily on epic songwriting and explosive delivery. This combination is what define Decrepitude’s sonic direction, providing a thick layer of darkness that envelops the listener in a uniquely depressive shroud. Arguably, the culmination of the ideas presented in the project are best performed on ‘suffering’ a wintery, primarily instrumental masterpiece that absorbs influence from Colton’s favourite genres (black metal, post-rock) and crafts his defining work at just over five minutes.
With interests in so many different genres, the artist’s ability to make a quality product; be it hip-hop, emo, or metal; is more intact and impressive than ever before. Colton undoubtedly has plenty more of these projects to come, his sweeping genre knowledge and flawless execution of ideas marks him as a talent not to be ignored.
Listen to decrepitude in full here.