Tom Vek – Leisure Seizure (Universal)

If Tom Vek looks like a nicely-dressed young graphic designer, it’s because that’s what he is. He also writes the type of music you might imagine a particularly hip graphic designer would enjoy – nerdy, intellectual, modern, retro and quirky.

Sounding like the punk, British younger cousin of Luscious Jackson and the more sophisticated older brother of Pikachunes, Vek waited six years to unleash Leisure Seizure after the release of debut album We Have Sound. During his time away from the spotlight Vek honed his production techniques and perfected his equally sharp new rockabilly hair-do.

The self-taught multi-instrumentalist has created diverse beds of music over which his lyrics and voice are the real features. Vek has come under fire for his flat monotone, but it is this simple “boy next door” quality that pushes his lyrics to the fore. In Aroused Vek compares a girlfriend to her own description of reading a novel, and A Chore is about a relationship breaking up over the age-old tension between romance and stability. Because the vocals are so clear, if you can identify with the lyrics (and tolerate Vek’s voice) Leisure Seizure is likely to remain at the top of the pile near your stereo.

A child of the YouTube generation, Vek effectively exploits his mediums with very stylish clips for A Chore and Aroused, which are well worth checking out. Leisure Seizure is a chic and cheerful release from a robot boy with a poet’s soul.

Kathryn van Beek

Click here to listen to Aroused from Leisure Siezure