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Szymon – Tigersapp [Album Review]

words by Emma Rose

Tigersapp is the musical brainchild and legacy of Szymon Borzestowski.

In 2012, at the age of 23 Szymon lost an ongoing battle with depression when he took his own life. Before his death, Szymon was dedicated to his music and had spent the majority of 2008 in his bedroom studio writing and recording his debut album. The album was on its way to completion when Szymon ended his life. His family and friends were determined for Szymon’s music to not die with him and so partnered with a label to get the album released; Tigersapp is this album.

Even when looking at the album as a self-contained work of art, without considering the tragic backstory, Tigersapp is an exceptional debut album.

Tigersapp explores new worlds with its interesting mix of electronic and folk. The beautiful, picked guitar riffs are infused with elements of synthesised electronica that float overtop the percussive rhythm, mellow sax and Szymon’s smooth vocals. The emotive poetic lyrics are highlighted through the pleasing melodies and ornamental vocals. Though the album has a beautiful, chilled out vibe, there’s an interesting variety throughout the songs and instrumentation. The emotive nature of the songs makes Tigersapp somewhat reminiscent of Sufjan Stevens’ last album release Carrie and Lowell.

Due to the overall quality it is difficult to say what the standout tracks on the album are and will probably be subject to personal taste. For me ‘Roma’ is a particular highlight, offering beautiful harmonies that colour the guitar and lyrics, which are driven through the smooth beat. ‘Floods’ pulls back slightly more than the other tracks, giving it a simplicity that truly reflects its intention, with mentions of deserts and things not being what they seem. ‘Saigon’ is a particularly interesting addition to the album, being one of two instrumentals and offering a laid back, jazzy vibe highlighted by piano, electric guitar, woodwinds and sax.

Overall the album is a beautiful offering of emotion and truth highlighted by a lovely mix of harmonies, acoustic instrumentation and electronic elements. A wonderful work of art by Szymon Borzestowski that will live on in our memories.

“Music was Szymon Borzestowski’s life. He loved it, lived it, breathed it.”

Rating: ★★★★★

Tigersapp will be available around the globe on August 21 through Eloper Music.

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