TBR: 5th July
Nerang have been off the radar for a little while, fusing talents from Berlin and The Gold Coast is not an easy stretch. The plus side means that fans of the label, and there a lot of them, are all too happy to snap up the next release. Low Tape has been working on other labels until now, with major appearances on the likes of Further Electronix and X-Kalay. This debut pressing for Nerang brings home that subtly Detroit flavoured melodic electro. Capable of fulfilling the requirements of a late night build-up or the full on swing at prime o'clock, Reality Zone punches through and hands us something we can't refuse.
Opening with Funky Detune, spaced out chimes ring out across a field of reverb. Their struck notes provide a distinctive melody which rolls across itself, building with the drums. New percussion layers are spliced and layered over like foundations of a gourmet cake. Pulsating bass curdles across the top-soil in neat patterns of groove. A dancing energy penetrates the thick, dense selections of melody, drum, and sample swoosh together in a perpetually coiling sonic cream. Mellow yet deeply coloured with variations and adventure, the tune reveals new lights and rhythms with every chapter.
Second up is a neat chord progression that teeters on the edge of a beat. Oriental bells and strings clammour in a happy melody while the kick drum stabilises the piece with consistent thuds. Voice elements are added, they choral chant in harmonies with the chirrupy tune as cymbals clash in secluded corners. It breaks down and a bass tone is let out of its box. Frantic plucks give a fast paced surge into corridors of sound. Objects flash by at speed as the track carries us on its kineses through passages of wavelength and their relationships to each other. Paradise is truly uplifting and envelopes wonderful things.
Dangerous Groove starts with a simple drum-beat. Odd sounds snake around the individual beats before a torrent of cymbals adds a new funky dimension to the rhythm. Bass squelches in neat puddles while a wispy melody zig-zags in the ceiling. Sinister synthesiser tones form droplets of intention in atmospheric bursts while bass and melody combine to push forwards in their drive. Grabby interludes fill the spaces while repeating motifs swirl and swell around a persistent and prominent beat.
Next is a vocal sample running over the top of a low-fi beat sequence. Electro Foreva makes it easy to agree. Beginning with the choppy introduction, pads and drum build a dense section which opens out into stabs and slush. Sleek and deep repeating phrases of melody intertwine with vocals while chatty treble bass clambers around on craggy tops.
Next is East Dancer. This one begins on a thumping techno bassline that brings home images of brightly coloured lights and industrial surroundings. A swinging melody breaks free and brings with it all kinds of colourful harmonies and directions. This one is for putting your hands in the air while it continually pumps energy into the centre of the room. Fast drumming in simple beats mix with turn-taking melodies which mirror each other across the stereoscope.
It finishes on a simpler tone, a neatly packaged drum and cymbal strike with prominent snare. This revolves and reveals breathy synth pads which cloud in misty clumps of tone. Zaps and bendy melody build from quiet places and with gradual evolution, they reach higher peaks of amplitude. Ghostly scenes and eager, wide-eyed willingness to explore fuse when a vocal sample cuts through. It's sensual and evocative, with an element of Enigma in the tone. Autumnesia is a sensual and more minimal finale to this wide reaching and accessible EP, available here.
Low Tape is on Soundcloud
Nerang Records are on Soundcloud
Rowan Blair Colver for the Homunculus Media Group
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