Quarantine was the debut album from Midwestern electronic musician Laurel Halo. Its blend of ambient, pop and techno topped off by her unadorned vocals led it to be a critics favourite and it won The Wire Album of the Year in 2012. Her work on the album was lush, beautiful but also spooky and with and otherworldly feel. A true classic of its genre.
CD £11.99 HDBCD014
Ace Digipak CD on Hyperdub.
Once again Hyperdub prove they're leading the charge against mediocrity both in contemporary club music and the softer, more introspective sounds of the underground. The rippling calm and strange spacious aural cosmos this talented Brooklyn songstress evokes is nothing less that breathtaking on her debut full length for Kode9's ever-evolving stable of electronic wunderkinder.
Like the best music 'Quarantine' gradually reveals its subtle charms over repeated listens with odd crumbling, submerged or textured beats; blurry little melodic signatures; unusual abstract rhythms; hazy samples; exploratory astral synth-scapes and glazed, spangled vocal trails. It's both a sonically intriguing, incredibly dream-like and peaceful journey that you cannot just dip into and walk away with a memorable anthem such as her classic 'Metal Confection'.
'Quarantine' possesses a mesmerising flow of bristling, bubbling alien electronica and swirling understated zen-pop that really does quite sound like nothing else. Much of the album is almost beatless, relying on microrhythms and glistening electronic fauna or intriguing samples as a backdrop for her voice to swoop in and out of. Proper stratospheric spiritual shit.
She takes inspiration from embryonic EBM, shimmering techno, warm ambient, cool R'n'B, glistening kosmische and ethereal musics and moulds something outstanding from these ingredients to create a unique, exciting experimental perspective that carries real identity, purpose and character. Remember when you first heard 'Like Weather' by Leila on Rephlex? This album has that kind of otherworldly kaleidoscopic feel of wonder to it, I don't reckon I'm gonna cease listening to this album ever...
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- Quarantine by Laurel Halo
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