Thursday, 31 May 2012

The 2kDozen 500: #200 - Actress, "R.I.P."

Been meaning to listen to this one for ages, so I've kind of saved it for the special number 200!

It's a lot more liquid-sounding than I'd expected: not sure why that would be. Even before the trickle and tinkle of "Holy Water", the previous two tracks eddy and sparkle far more lightly than I'd expected. Maybe the album title suggests more dark broodyness. "Marble Plexus" does up the ante in that general direction - huge mossy fuzzes sweep across the tunes clearing a path for something else to make its way through.

"Jardin" describes just that Edenic kind of business, plenty of water again. Lushness and vegetation, but it's the water that dominates and keeps on going. "Shadow Form Tartarus" is pretty monstrous, it stalks the streets for prey while xylophones guide its victims to their eternal rest. The fountain fuzz has become a constant drizzle of the soul, soaking everything and everybody right through with the desperation of the situation. Stand out track so far.

There's more dark glitter under the surface of "Raven" too. It cuts through the weariness of the worn tape sounds as opposed to so much chillwave stuff that near drowns in it. Or perhaps Actress' sounds lurk within the deep as part of its darkness? (Yes, Coc, maybe THAT's what happens. Aye, caramba!) A thriving sense of lush vegetation all over this music. And there's some kind of Paradise/Eden theme bubbling under with "Serpent" (a sinewy heat haze of a tune) and "Caves of Paradise" (something of a Deep House feel to it), but I'm not sure where that comes in. Perhaps it's just a coincidence.

"The Lord's Graffiti" takes off in a different direction - more of a plodding disco shimmer. "N.E.W." builds Aphex castles and turrets out of clouds, driving the foundations deep into cool, blue lava. "IWAAD" is riven with strengths and the water doesn't tinkle any longer and there are snatches of sound that circle round and round like really handsome disco seagulls. And there's a tremulous wee bass riff that works itself in towards the end.

Just made the mistake of reading the review of this in The Quietus. So much more precise and imaginative and interesting than mine. Ah, well. There's always the contact centre work to invest my creative energies into! You can read it here. I suggest you do.

Rating: Vegetable out of Mineral

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