There are 22 tracks on this disk, and I'm not going to go through every single
one in detail, cuz I'm lazy. But overall the CD is full of a stripped down
back-to-the-basics take on drum and bassix-like music, with lots of drum ornamentation.
Lots of super crunchy beats are mixed with a spattering of rhodes and lots of bass goodness. Sure to
piss off the 3/4 pants bohemian pseudo-hippy middle to upper class ganja
abusing and casual cocaine white boy crowd crowd, there are lots of jazzy time
signatures and non-rave melodies which you'd have to know a little bit about
music to appreciate. Due to it being too complex for most retarded DJs who
expect music to cater to their lack of mixing talent, this is more a
chill-in-your home style CD as opposed to a dance-the-night-away in a crowded
bar drinking overpriced beer kind of gig. Anyway enough sarcasm for now, lets
dive into the actual music.
I'll start with the bad… Some of the sound quality on the disk is a bit
"thin" for my tastes. It's hard to judge this kind of music but I have heard
breakcore-style stuff that had a bit more meat to it. When I listen to the
disk I don't know if the point was to get a grainy lofi sound or if there was
compensation to get rid of some of the lofiness. It's kind of stuck in the
middle. I'm not saying combining fast breakcore style rhythems with smooth
jazzy melodies is going to be easy though, so I guess compromises need to be
made. I just felt that some of the grittyness hurt the melodic aspect and some
of the smoothness of the synthesizers hurt the gritty breakcore aspect.
If you are looking at "song progression" on a song-by-song basis this is not the point of the disk.
The entire disk can be interpreted as one progression, with many
smaller parts. It is best to listen to it from start to finish.
I have got to hand it to Mr. Markle, there is a good cohesion
throughout the disk and with a very consistent yet evolving character. A few
songs stood out for me though. I found the song "Venia" managed to mix the
jazzy chords with the gritty breakcore drums in a successful way, with crusty
breaks (which sounded satisfyingly violent) being sprinkled with smooth
chords. The first track "Subai" had a nice back-and-forth between the melody
and the drums as well. The song "Napatheeb" seemed to combine the complex
drums and the smooth melody (which had that nice Aphex Twin/Autechre style to
it) very successfully and transparently.
Overall this CD surprised me a lot, as it is not a combination of styles I
normally encounter. If like jazzy DnB with an edge, you'll like it. If you
want some melodic froth on your breakcore cappucino, this is it. While there
is always progress to be made, I am interested in seeing where this
amalgamation of styles goes in the future.