blank

We might very easily be on the verge of some pretty exciting discoveries on Pentapolis, recently dropped as a collaboration between a Dutch production duo and an eccentric British rock band featuring some of the freshest retro-inspired songs in recent memory.

Heavily inspired by 70s music, Dizzy Panda are a Dutch duo based in Haarlem, and their music is perfectly fitting for cinematic, grand heist TV, with the sleazy riffage, madman organs, and boxy, hectic percussion. They are joined by The Perics, an English rock band with eccentric vocals that make a toy of whatever arrangement is playing underneath, taking jazz, soul, classic rock, or pop, and fully claiming them with their playful, dark, and enticing nature.

The album starts with an absolute banger. ‘Drunken Sailor’ is a jam! With terrific guitars and rhythmic vocal chops, the song is a rollercoaster of cool. Basically a chant, Dizzy Panda took a few lyrical lines and spun them into something intricate, engaging, bold, and quite honestly delightful. ‘Jazz Spastic’ is another immediate winner. The waltz, played on a very percussive Wurlitzer, drips with character, coupled with cyclic piano parts, peculiar percussions, and an arresting flute part, all make ‘Jazz Spastic’ a terrifically enjoyable listen. Following that is the dark but lively ‘My Aunt’s Cursed Enigma’, with its dry piano and dissonance-laden composition. One of the album’s more memorable songs with interesting instrumental choices.

‘Whispers of Harmony’ is another short and sleazy banger with more exciting bass riffs and eccentric percussion sounds, making for a hypnotizing listen with an interesting interplay between darker vocal melodies and more sinister, upbeat riffs. ‘Mad Maggie’ is another standout song. A descending riff, a tongue-in-cheek story about a Maggie that made a pact with the devil, all coupled with a driving groove and group vocals that are immediately arresting. After a healthy funk interlude with ‘Funky Green Gumbo’ and the hard-heavy ‘Flat Like a Pizza’, Dizzy Panda and The Perics end the album with ‘Bang Bang’, a short piece that recaps all that they have practiced throughout the 12 songs. Bass riffage, peculiar percussion, and interesting vocal harmonies.

Just listen to the  inventive ‘Sirens of Sunny Beach’ and you’ll know that Dizzy Panda are a duo with a witty, creative edge that’s capable of some inventive ideas. A thoroughly engaging listen, Pentapolis is groovy, characterful, and cinematic. A driving listen that’s full of amazing ideas, executed with balance and skill. Worth a deep dive for sure.