Meet Roger, a guy we see once in a while somewhere in Amsterdam during a presentation or fashion show. He introduced himself to us as a musician. Of course we wanted to hear something, but no, we had to wait. Not for a week or a month…nooo, we waited at least for a whole year! And every time we bumped into him, he promised us we will be the first ones to publish his song. So, loosen your hips ladies en gents and listen to the first debut single ‘Picky’ of El.Rod & Abstract. “It’s cool for a man to say ‘no’ to a woman”
About El.Rod & Abstract
In 2008 the two friends Roger Saro and Gestow Power had an idea to record an EP and release it online. 1 ½ years later that humble idea has expanded into a full length LP. Due to their combined enthusiasm and passion, the duo decided to officially join forces and form a band: El.Rod & Abstract. The end result of their alliance is the long awaited debut album “Avant-garde”. El.Rod provides the sing and rap vocals while Abstract handles the production. Before becoming a duo El.Rod & Abstract were individually known as prominent figures in their own respective ways. El.Rod was a radio personality at popular Dutch radio station FunX in 2008 & 2009 and Abstract was already known professionally as a DJ. Spinning at the hottest clubs in Amsterdam like Jimmy Woo & Supperclub and eventually also becoming the back-up DJ for well known Dutch rapper Dio. This project serves as El.Rod & Abstract’s official coming out as a band.
Inspired by the sounds of artists such as Prince, James Brown, Róisín Murphy & Kanye West they managed to create an ‘avant-garde-like’ vibe with their music. They chose not to stick to just one genre. From singing to rapping and from Hip-hop, to Pop and Funk. The Funk aspect can be heard on their debut single “Picky”.
El.Rod studied the vocal acrobatics from music legends like Prince for this particular track: “I went and listened to all of his old stuff till “Diamonds & Pearls” but not to mimic. I look for his idiosyncrasies. The way he breathes on a track. All of his weird hickups and the way he sometimes doesn’t even sing, but instead lets the beat breathe. Those little things are very educational for me.” El.Rod’s inspiration doesn’t hail from music alone. Film, art and especially fashion also play a significant role in his creative process; “Movies from Spike Jonze, David Lynch and Michel Gondry can give me a creative urge to write something while someone like Martin Margiela can inspire me fashionwise but also artistically.
The artistic aspect is visible in the artwork for “Picky” designed by up & coming female artist Sule Orhan. Besides several expositions throughout the Netherlands, she also designed for Dutch fashion designers Viktor & Rolf. Sule’s involvement came from numerous brainstorm sessions with El.Rod about the term avant-garde and what it represents. Blending the old avant-garde style with modern day graphics, she created a subtle yet significant cover of a blindfolded woman embodying the term “Picky”.
Although “Picky” is written from a male’s perspective, the song has a general meaning. El.Rod explains; “I think a lot of people believe in ‘don’t settle for less’. It’s really cool for a woman to show class and elegance in her behavior towards men. But it’s also cool for a man to say ‘no’ to a woman. The men can also be ‘picky’”.
El.Rod & Abstract give the world a sneak preview of their brand with a free download of the refreshingly funky “Picky”.