Twists & Turns
- Ariadne’s Labyrinth
This is what nicely sums up the Touched label. After the surprise release of one of the biggest names in recent electronic music history, Autechre, it's equally humbling to be able to offer up talented, up and coming artists. It makes us realise that there are those out there
just as impressive as the established masters. There's a place for everyone here and we welcome them with open arms.
"Twists And Turns" is simply stunning. After an initial EP release earlier this year on Detroit Underground with 'Lost And Founded' and a contribution to Touched Music's summer mix that reappears here, 'Ariadne's Labyrinth' delivers a complex and intricate work that screams effort and talent.
It opens boldly and doesn't screw around. Leads are in your face, breaks and rhythms delicately layered and nearly all of the tracks build up beautifully into crescendos that are deconstructed with equal majesty.
With an almost leftfield feeling at times, I'm often reminded of 'Spokes' (the everlasting joy from Warp Record's Plaid) and the live tour that went along with it - twisted delays and assertive melodies guiding you from one track to the next. Most tracks could easily intertwine and the whole experience is both dance-worthy and contemplative with a rolling middle portion reminiscent of the best bits of the 'Dial P' mix rolled into one. This is both excitingly new and nostalgic.
A skilled violinist and pianist, the training shines through with impeccably self-recorded & sampled violin scattered about the album. It bridges the electroacoustic gap while firmly staying loyal to electronica, neither raw or over-processed with a perfect level of usage. Similarly impressive is the use of scattered Amen-style breaks and confident kicks that underpin the whole thing.
Although full of variety it never feels like it's searching for a purpose or trying too hard to fit in. I can relax or I can boogie, the choice is mine as the choice is there. From ambience to Klezmer and Jazz influences through a bevy of melodic electronica the whole thing ends perfectly with a relaxed piece that gives you a chance to contemplate what just happened.
And albeit less secret and surprising as they used to be, it's lovely to be presented with a hidden track - my first listen was a pleasant revelation that my experience wasn't quite yet over.
Be sure to expand your collection and grab a copy from Touched Music, as always proceeds will be going to the ever-deserving Macmillan Cancer Support!
- CD: £7.99