The ReAktion: Selknam review

The ReAktion has recently been tucked away within the various complexities of production and tour plans to celebrate their release of their newest album, Selknam. Hailing from Santiago, Chile, the group covers every genre from alternative, to electro pop, to metal, to rock, to screamo. Although merging this kind of diversity can easily take a turn for the worse, Selknam holds testament to true talent as it gains support throughout the masses. Ironically, the only track that fails in terms of cohesiveness is the first one, “10 Steps to Success.” Rather than weaving the styles together, they’re just kind of sandwiched in there, trading craft for intensity. While I see 100% that the track was meant to start out the album with high-energy, it doesn’t do the rest of the album justice in terms of skill. That being said, the rest of the album is truly masterful. With a perfect balance of consistency and variation, the tracks begin with a solid foundation in artfully composed and performed rock and roll and are accented with elements of metal and dance. With such a variety of genres, it’s so easy to do it badly, but everything is beautifully interwoven within Selknam. The key factor that really tips this album over the edge into being great is cohesiveness, both within songs and the album as a whole. The instrumentals are wonderfully eclectic, providing a huge variety of styles and vibes. You should see the list of instruments after each member in their bio- it must be one full tour van. With such rapidly shifting moods, it’s hard to believe there are only four members on stage. Vocally, the album is a masterpiece. It takes a lot for me to actually enjoy any kind of screamo, but man do these guys pull it off. Rojas is able to convey exquisite melodies with such intensity and passion, it’s a wonder he doesn’t bust a vein. The lyrics are complex and deep, even throwing in a little Spanish to keep it interesting. Despite the rocky start, The ReAktion has created a work with extraordinary mass-appeal while still maintaining massive amounts of artistic integrity. Selknam is beautifully composed and skillfully executed, and I genuinely hope it gets the recognition it deserves within the alt scene. We should probably just take a moment to thank a higher power that none of these guys stuck with their day jobs. Rating: 8/10 -Kelly Fox