A sound defined by dystopian tones, heavily processed percussion, and droning vocals, hello image bring us their new EP ‘DOTS’.
If you’re trying to work it out, DOTS stands for ‘Don’t Over Think Shit’. Once you listen to this collection of four tracks, this title makes complete sense. There is no overwhelming array of noises, there are no excessive solos, everything is quite simple and straight, and with that it is very effective.
Explaining the meaning behind DOTS, Steven Viney (the mastermind behind hello image) said it’s ‘a record about the passage of time, about sitting with yourself, being forced to stare into the void, and realising that the future is here, right now, exactly like it’s always been, just like before.’.
Whilst I’m sure this meaning does lie deep in the lyrics, it’s a bit of a task to hear that meaning. In each song, the vocals sit too quietly. It almost sounds as if the singer is struggling to get the words out. Whether that was creative intention is difficult to say, but it definitely creates more problems for the EP than it was meant to.
Vocals are vital to differentiating songs and giving them uniqueness, especially when taking the simple approach to the instrumentation. As a result, ‘The Future Is Here’, ‘Gifting’, and ‘Folly’ all seem to be slightly too cohesive, morphing into 9 minutes of similarity.
Fortunately, the more upbeat final track ‘Like Before’ sets itself apart. Ringing electronic noise and a funky bassline make it the standout track from the EP.
If you want to decide for yourself, listen to ‘DOTS’ down below and let us know what you think!