“Jou tyd sal kom”, featuring Afrikaans hip-hop artist Hemelbesem, is a track that deviates from the slow melodiousness of the album with its strength and dynamism. In this song, lyricist and lead vocalist Jaco van der Merwe says that Bittereinder is “a fully domesticated rap ‘n roll band”, and the song showcases the depth that Bittereinder and company are so well known for.

An almost sinister melody introduces the track “Doodsberig”, which is ominous both melodically and lyrically, as the title suggests. It is a darker track that further showcases their distinctively pensive lyrics.

The majority of the album features songs with a gripping hook-and-chorus combo that makes them all the more memorable and striking. The chorus of the song “Tribute”, for instance, lingers with the listener and tarries in the mind long after the song has ended.

“Rymtevaarder”, boasting an outer space theme and an apt Afrikaans pun in its title, is a short track yet it carries much lyrical weight. “Skerm” is the album’s title single and is more reminiscent of the group’s previous work. The music video for “Skerm” is surreal to say the least, and it even incorporates the infamous “blue screen of death” that has driven many computer users up the wall. The song itself speaks about how people are deadened by technology and how technology aids in spreading false information, referred to as “digital misunderstandings” in the song.

“Skerm” is one of the angriest songs on the album, which is noteable if you consider that the album itself is an intensely emotion-laden album, but it’s not just anger that can be found here. Skerm focuses on a myriad of themes like mortality, growing old and balancing domestic life with life as a performer. Bittereinder shows us that good music, like good literature, offers certain mental challenges, and should serve to make the listener think. This is exactly what Bittereinder has achieved with Skerm, as their lyrics fall on the ears like poetry, demanding the listener’s undivided attention and forcing them to think just a little bit deeper.


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