Casper Sage Finds the Silver Lining Time and Time Again in 'Synthesis+'
Indie alt-R&B artist Casper Sage explores the emotional complexities accompanying life's highs and lows in his new EP, Synthesis+. Across the six brilliant tracks, the Oklahoma native vulnerably discusses topics like falling in love, living in the present, and fueling creative inspiration while highlighting his incredible vocal and production talents.
“Synthesis+ is a collection of ‘feel good’ music, but not every message is exclusively that,” shares Sage. “I consider it music to amplify when you feel good and lighter whenever you’re not. I would say this EP is the rainbow after the storm, the first day of spring after the winter. Something to remind you of that feeling you were convinced you forgot.”
The EP's opener, "cloud freestyle," starts the body of work on a high note, using breezy, quasi-trippy instrumentation and radiant production to emulate and lure the listener into a 'head in the clouds' sonic space. Sage reveals that he's been taking time for himself to perfect "the recipe" and figure out who in his life is "blessing" or "hexing" him. With this fresh perspective in mind, in the chorus, he asks whoever is listening, "And if you really get it / You feelin' what I'm feelin' / Let me hear you say it loud/ Said if you really with it / And your head hit the ceilin' / Tell me, are you sleepin' with the clouds?"
The synthy "U4EA" paints the record with a touch of retro-nostalgia before leading into the Nirvana-esque "Flow State." The track opens with a false start, with Sage singing with soft guitar strums, "Caught up / I wanna," and then launching into the rich world of "Flow State." Thrumming bass lines, subtle percussion, and sunny guitar riffs melt together and intertwine with Sage's soothing voice. He reflects on his life and his efforts towards "trying not to get caught up" because he wants "to flow like the water" and achieve peace of mind.
The grooving and twinkling "Brown Noise" dwells in this R&B haven for a little longer before switching gears and leading listeners into the surrealistic "is the real life?" Over mellow instrumentation, produced by Sage, he explores the euphoric feeling of falling in love for the first time and the disbelief of being in a new and exciting romantic relationship.
The EP ends on the previously released "FML." Having appeared on Sage's last EP, Pseudo, the closer is a swaying and smooth finale that sees Sage admit to feeling like he doesn't deserve his lover's affection and is struggling to care for himself. The soothing instrumentation juxtaposes increasingly reflective lyrics that end with a powerful outro filled with instrumentals that glow like the setting sun on the water, rippling out with a collection of golden guitar riffs, intricate vocal harmonies, and Sage crooning, "I just gotta wait for all the steam to leave/ Hope it ain't a day you can't believe in me."
Though only 22, there is wisdom and knowing in Sage's work that belies his age, proving that the young star has his sights set on longevity and will no doubt be a legend one day if he and we continue to believe in him and the art he creates.
Listen to Synthesis+ below: