Monday, June 27, 2011
2010 saw the emergence of a new genre of music that nobody could quite put their finger on defining. It was kind of spooky, had its' leanings towards fetishizing the imagery of 1970's witchcraft movies and Twin Peaks, (and the corresponding soundtracks) and an unusual sonic influence (wether intentional or not) in DJ Screw who was known for his mix tapes of almost demonically pitch shifted and slowed-down hip hop. That genre has been known as Witchhosue, Drag, Chillwave, Emo (just kidding- we all know that emo is now synonymous with failed goth) what ever you want to call it (or how ever you want to ignore it) there is something appealing in the horror of it all.
Amongst the labels here in the states releasing (insert what ever you want to call it here) music New York's Tri Angle Records is the leader of the pack with top notch artists like Balam Acab, oOoOO,(who's self-titled EP was easily my favorite record of 2010) How to Dress Well, Holy Other, and added to that roster of quality is the debut EP from Clams Casino.
The Rainforest EP finds Clams Casino sole member Mike Volpe exploring the same sonic paths as label mates Balam Acab, and Holy Other- chopped up vocal samples and melancholy oozing through the ones and zeros which feels like everything trip hop promised us, but failed to deliver when it went on prozak. (think Portishead for the Blade Runner generation)
The first track Natural feels like a slightly less menacing Burial combined with the afore mentioned Balam Acab, while other tracks such as Treetop, Waterfalls, and Drowning are mixed bags of hard synth sequences, hip hop sensibilities, and big beats all weaved in and out of the almost heartbreaking vocal mashes (the latter of the three has what I could swear was something reminiscent of the ki ki ki ma ma ma from the Friday the 13th soundtrack )
The final track of the EP Gorilla sounds a bit like a Suspiria era Goblin recording hiphop. Sinister synths move in and out of the mix like an Argento killer with razor sharp precision.
While the EP may not be everybody's cup of tea it certainly is worth a spin or two late at night in an old ballet school.
Natural by clammyclams
Buy Rainforest at Boomkat
Clams Casino on Facebook