Singer-songwriter Sean Bigler has created a soundtrack to
a graphic novel or a play, finding inspiration from what has been
distorting America's burgeoning generations for the last twenty years.
Bigler, who goes by the moniker Epigene, wrote and produced
the 2-disc, self-released set A Wall Street Odyssey which narrates
the life of a fictitious young man named Yossarian.
Yossarian is coming of age. Straight out of college, he becomes a
Wall Street broker. Steadily, he grows disillusioned by the job which,
he learns, perpetuates corruption and greed to run rampant in society.
He goes into debt living the lavish lifestyle of a high priced broker.
His life spirals out of control and he is fired from his job. He falls
into a depression that causes him to drink until he is unconscious.
He becomes a homeless man and his health rapidly deteriorates. His
brother finds him and offers him salvation by moving Yossarian into
a progressive farming community which resembles the life on a kibbutz.
Yossarian undergoes a metamorphosis - the death of his old self and
the birth of a spiritual existence through meditation. It is through
meditation that he sees the future - the destruction of humanity.
He perceives that the agenda of bank executives and corporate brass
are destroying society, thereby causing inflation, unemployment, food
scarcity, and the high cost of living. The bottom falls out when the
stock market crashes; banks close their doors and Marshall Law is
enacted. Yossarian's emotional turmoil prompts him to give up his
quest to save the world. He realizes that people must come to their
own self-realization. No one can do it for them.
That is the story behind the album and Bigler's music means to bring
this message to the public. He relies on electronic-based tracks creating
satiny atmospherics in "Looks Life I Made It" and robotic
effects and automated jaunts strewn across "Money Master"
and "The Catch 22". The techno-pop stylizing of the tracks
is reminiscent of Hot Chip. Bigler's vocal rapping in "Take
My Head Off" has a spastic punk compression which switches to
an ambient netting through "Rabbit Hole". The swiveling
ethers of "Losing Everything" are induced with eerie echoes
which segue into the dark and moody vapors of "I Eat The Concrete".
The album transitions to a psychedelic folk coloring in "The
Settlement of Love" and a rustic country-twang threading "In
A Circle". The throng of horns lining "The Farmer's Diary"
brightens the album and then slips away in "Nature Spirits"
to trump up the rattling flute and organ riffs which resemble a Beatles-que
sound. The billowy beats of "The Serpent Mound" infuse a
tribal vibe, which morphs into a folksy voicing in "The Jewel
In The Sun" and "I'm Gonna Love The World".
Disc 2 is electro-pop oriented with the dance grooves of "Stranger
In A Strange Land" and "Back To The Country". Though
listeners feel like they are following a play, there is nothing in
the album that suggests anything resembling a showtune. The twists
in the plot mirror the twists in the melodic patterns like the psychedelic
bent of "The Warning" and the electro-pop pulses reaming
across "The Conspiracist" which have a machine-made complexion.
The soft palpitations arching and ebbing along "To Each His Own"
have an Indian accent which emphasizes a trance-like state.
Sean Bigler uses machine-made music to make his point. The album
resembles a movie soundtrack or a modern musical where each track
takes the listener through another chapter in his book or play.
The story reflects contemporary events and the message is one that
proposes a remedy for society's ills. Bigler's music isn't original
sounding but he uses tones that are familiar to people and he shapes
them to narrate his story.
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