Sickmode is the force that keeps pushing every boundary of Hardstyle, and his newest mini album is another shining example of just how unique and forward-thinking this artist is when compared with every other act around him. Hardstylemag had the opportunity to have a close look at this album.

Rene

So this it is – Sickmode’s second album. HEY X2 actually a weird title, but it totally fits to the Artist’s name 😉 . Released on the music label ‘Aggressive Records’ Sickmode delivers an album with 9 fresh tracks. His latest single release ‘Make it Pop’ from this album already send out a clear statement, that this guy can’t just make a normal hardstyle song. But can he make a normal album? Let’s see


Album Review: Sickmode – HEY X2: Official Artwork

The first track is titled after this album – HEY X 2. The powerful bass-driven track with, starts with a vocal intro ‘Hey kick it like – this’ followed by nice synths. At approximately 160 a nice kick sequences ticks in. Whilst the kicks alter with every new sequence, this track moved our feet already forward.

LETS TRY NEW THINGS

Already the second track ‘Emoji 2.0’ brings the level of experimental elements, we actually like Sickmode for. ‘Here we go again’ underlined with reverse bass kicks, but also with rough hard and gated kicks. Only the melody part in the middle part, with fast raps like back from the 90’s, give us a short break. The second half delivers a pure warfare of Sickmode kicks, we are used to and we really like.

Can it get even more experimental? Yes it can, with track No. 3 – ‘Full Tank (L4MB0 2.0). A nice and interesting Trip Hop part at the beginning, let us dive deep into a funny pop song. But with the first drop – hard and rough kicks are returning. Big distortions and a Lamborghini sound in the background, kick interruptions and wild Amiga Sounds from the 80’s create a funny but destroying warfare at the last third.

HARDSTYLE INCOMING

Can he just make a regular Hardstyle song? Nope – ha welcome to track No. 4 ‘Make it Pop’. A nice raw intro with a clear buildup leading to a hard and destroying drop – with dark kicks. Especially these kicks after the break remind us back to the early Gearbox times. Dark, dirty and screechy – ok Party people in da house.


Album Review: Sickmode – HEY X2: Emoji 2.0

Track No. 5 – ‘No Time To Waste’ is a collab with Zyon. The track kicks off with short and obviously reverse kicks. The sweet voals, which are taking over lead the way to the first drop – here the original and typical Sickmode kicks tick in. Surprising to us here, were the strong synths in the middle for a strong and melodic climax but fat and bold hardstyle kicks. We can say that this is one of our favorite tracks.

ROUGH KICKS RETURNING

The track ‘One and Only’ is another collab with Mish. Sweet vocals ‘I know that you want me’ and nice hardstyle leads create a nice buildup with a classic hardstyle drop. The kicks underline the hardstyle lyrics perfectly. Compared to other Sickmode tracks – nice and soft, up to the second buildup. Here the rough and bold kicks take over again, now it’s a real raw hardstyle bomb again.

His collab  with Rooler ‘Too Hot’ is actually a collection of wild and rough sounds. The track starts with a mentally strong trip hop element and ‘Make you sweat’ lyrics. The first kicks are bold and plain, exchanged by a rough sequence of raw hardstyle kicks and the continuing lyrics. Partly it feels like techno elements from the 80’s and the returning kicks create some kind of hypnoses.


Album Review: Sickmode – HEY X2: Sickmode Profile

LAST BUT NOT LEAST

The last track on the album is ‘Break This’ and maybe the kickroll king. Screaming vocals and distorting noises create a wild and artificial atmosphere. Screeches and a vocal part from a movie combined to a dark and sinister atmosphere. The kicks are doing the rest – rough, dirty, hard, loud and short synths prepare a strong and powerful climax around 2:01 with a bold and heavy drop leading up to the complete carnage of kick rolls. This is the Raw-Hardstyle we came for.


CONCLUSION

It’s obvious that Sickmode tried to try out new things and new elements. Luckily his experiments mostly work out. Elements taken from Trip Hop, Break Core, or even Trance deliver a fresh album with some surprises. We are happy to see, that Sickmode can even create softer Hardstyle tracks with nice vocals and melodies.

The fraction of the rougher side, gets served too. Sickmode managed to implement enough raw-hard kicks and elements in this album so serve also their needs. In total, Sickmode emphasized that there are actually no rules and boarders to create music. Thus we have listened to an album that maybe just marks the beginning of a new musical journey from Sickmode. We are curious for more.

The album can be bought and downloaded here

ALBUM REVIEW: SICKMODE - HEY X2
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