Thursday, 14 May 2015

Review: Lucy and Klock – War Lullaby Stroboscopic Artefacts SA024 – May 11th, 2015

Having previously released label mainstay Lucy’s collaboration with Speedy J (Zeitgeber), Stroboscopic Artefacts now present the results of his work with Ostgut Ton producer Ben Klock. War Lullaby is a curious title for a curious release presenting a variety of styles, none of which turn out quite as might be imagined.

The initial mood set by 'Bliss' is graceful and fluent. Rippling, gamelan-like tones and subtle bass pressure engineer a feeling that's simultaneously subtle, tense and optimistic.

The title track is instantly memorable, introduced by an eerily smooth bassline hovering in a void. Once the beat kicks in a futuristic minimal disco feel develops which is then made strange by the final element - a heavily-filtered and indecipherable speech sample. This is a very distinctive and original track and the highlight here.

With its muffled kick ‘Santeria’ initially seems dubbier/housier but a de-tuned bleepy sequence and a spiralling minmal acid line soon take it in another direction before it gradually shifts again into an uneasy form of ambient dub.

The closing ‘A Ghost Lovestory’ is essentially a long ambient outro with a hazy atmosphere made more interesting by an underlay of static hiss. The press release slightly tempts fate by stating that “ things can get very interesting when the two working methods superimpose perfectly, but can be just as interesting when the two fall slightly out of phase with one another.” The duo seem to have deliberately left gaps unclosed and allowed their techniques to drift out of synch, allowing a certain oddness to creep in to these hybrid tracks. Rather than offering a grand statement,the duo leave it to the listener to decipher and assess the tracks.

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