Review of Drape [12k1041]

The Wire (UK)

With no recent stirrings from Taylor Deupree’s Happy label, it’s hardly surprising to see his love of Japanese electronica slipping into the 12k roster this year. Drape, commences with a range of such “beautiful” sounds it’s almost too overwhelming. Like coffee overloaded with sugar, the opning track picks you up, but also leaves a saccharine aftertaste. “Skie” continues this outlook, a zipper-like loop launches its rhythmic heart and begins to reveal the disc’s true intentions. With a backbone of trickling chimes and looped clicking pulses, Moskitoo’s Sanae Yamasaki positions intermittent bursts of voice, all housed within a casing of considered but energetic processing.

If there’s one piece that throws a spanner in the works, then surely it’s “Manima No Lemon.” As white noise splutters away in the right channel for much of the piece, an unexpected explosion of flailing sine oscillations partway through this reclined composition is a stroke of brilliance. Just as the sweetness threatens to rot away the ears altogether, the introduction of gritty flavour lends to a taste of liberation. Even though the sugariness continues, it’s offset increasingly with sqeaking, unsettling digital debris and unresolved musical intersections, epitomised most effectively on “Tip Toe Blues,” which creates more a sense of isolated frostbite of the heart than an impression of 12-bar actions.

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