At the beginning it totally starts like some Brandt Brauer Frick record, having all those acoustic instruments, drums, guitars, strings, brass instruments, making all those little noises mixed up with the electronics. Then from the third track it goes fully electronic and creates this wonderful, cinematic journey with pulsing techno, ambient soundscapes, and broken beats. It all creates this great flow even though stylistically it’s not the most coherent album. I’m not afraid to say that it could well deserve a spot on my year-end toplist, even if it doesn’t make the Top 10 it could easily sit within the twenty.
I still have a hard time to slap a label on Nicolas Jaar. But this record is pure gold, again. Overall I can call it modern classical, although that’s not because of its use of traditional instruments and orchestration, but because it sounds like my idea of a perfect, meticulously crafted classical music today. Genrewise it’s some kind of ambient with a very wide range of intruments and sounds (drums, chimes, keys, strings, experimental textures, and voice), using inspiration from all over the world, and melting it into a introvert mind trip. As advertised on the cover. And an amazing cover art it is, too.
Update: the totally ethereal sounds of Hello, Chain gives me the goose bumps. I’m in awe.
Funny story, I haven’t known this is an Amon Tobin alias up until the point I got to writing this post and looked up info about this album. And already having listened to the full thing a couple of times. And I was already amazed. And now I’m double amazed. If I listen to the track Long Down now, I have this “what were you thinking” moment, like, of course it’s him.
It’s a super massive, amazing record. All the best of Tobin’s smart mid-tempo electronics spiced up with this rock and roll attitude, dragging heavy beats, all coming together for some heist movie chase scene atmosphere. And full-on surf rock in King of Kong – whaaat? I love this so much. It’s a silly ride and all over the place but sounds fresh for him and feels like a free spirit. Very well done.
Footnote: another artist who chose to be someone else for a bit to be able to work freely, like what I mentioned before.
Ambient house, straight-up ambient, and dub-fused chill-out music, exactly something like made by The Orb. All sounds are coming from a happy place, it’s light-hearted, easy to listen, and high on delight, it just makes me happy. It’s hard to pick favorite tracks but right now I love the long soothing soundscape of Shape Shifters best with its city ambience and trumpet notes. Although I changed favorites quite a bit since this is my go-to record to listen to whenever I don’t have time or need to think twice for the past two monhts right from its very release. I’m quite amazed how Paterson can deliver such a great album after 30 years steady in the business.
It’s a bitch that sometimes I can least elaborate about my favorite music. There are certain stuff that you just have to listen to and feels mundane to write words. This is one of those.