Movement follow up their alienated and paranoid single Us with something a little different. Less sparse, Ivory packs a fuller and more soulful sound that suggests their album may be even more interesting than anticipated... Dig that guitar solo!
The second full-length album release from the Donky Pitch stable feels like an altogether different beast to the experimental beguiling and at times beautiful Nonfiction from The Range. The debut album from Lockah, Yahoo Or The Highway, is thoroughly irreverent in comparison to Nonfiction, and whilst both feel thoroughly contemporary Lockah clearly filters his sound through the lenses of someone reared on 80s pop and 90s R&B
Much of the album appears to be delivered with tongue firmly in cheek, as demonstrated by several of the track titles (Some Velvet Evening and If loving U Is Wrong, I Don't Want To Be Wrong). In other words, you can't accuse Yahoo Or The Highway of taking itself too seriously. It knows how to have a good time though - 44-minutes whip past in a frenzy of melodic synth stabs, chaotic rattling percussion and scattergun samples.
The melodic heart of this record beats to the sound of 80s movie and TV soundtracks yet Lockah splices his pieces together to create something that is generally fresh and unique. His music is unashamedly populist - tracks like the insistent Summer Jorts (Some Cats Still Do) scream for attention and Lockah's album cares not for restraint. It is the layered approach to production that keeps things interesting though - tracks like Ayyo Tricknology, whilst not new to this release, still feels cacophonous and rapturous in equal measure. This seemingly intricately planned messiness rapidly seems to be Donky Pitch's calling card and Lockah is at his best when he manages to control his own vision, as on the fantastic Contact High Wit Big Lockah.
Yahoo Or The Highway feels a little like a sugar high. It is an undeniable pleasure, but a slightly guilty one. With all the bells and whistles Lockah occasionally pushes against the boundaries of taste and decency, but much of this record is a joy - so who cares?
Yahoo Or The Highway is out now on Donky Pitch, available to order from Amazon.co.uk on MP3 [affiliate link]. Listen on Spotify below:
Brighton's James Ross appears to have a bit of momentum, having already remixed the likes of Laura Mvula and Naughty Boy. Last summer he released two free EPs (Hot Telescope and Lisbon) but this double A-side represents his first official release, and it is an absolute gem.
Handprints is a glorious celebratory slab of percussive electronic music that layers vocals samples together to create hypnotic melodies. There is a lightness to the production, crisp drums and hollow bass giving the track a warm, inclusive feel.
Glitterall contrasts with a moodier soundscape, synths and crashing chords creating a more dramatic sense of scale. In contrast to the short-skirted pleasure of Handprints it feels epic, but it remains tasteful and restrained all the same.
Handprints / Glitterall has the unmissable sense of now that marks out The Range's best work. More please.
Handprints / Glitterall is out now on Space + Time Records, order from Amazon.co.uk on MP3 [affiliate link].