Sylvan Esso brings together Meath (Mountain Man) and Sanborn (Megafaun) to form a compelling duo making sharp pop music. HSKT compiles a series of remixes of their single of that name, with artists like Dntel and Hercules & Love Affair stepping up to add increased levels of club shuffle. On Partisan Records.
7/10 Laurie Staff review, 06 August 2015
This is not a person but the combination of Amelia Meath and Nicholas Sanborn, whose debut album of the same name came out last year. An electro-popping treat, the record’s dusty drum loops and honest bluesy vocal delivery was best summed up by single HSKT, presented here in many forms. An extended version of the original kicks things off, the bouncy bass leading the dusty-road vocal of Meath through various intensities that’s surely club-ready before being followed by a purely acapella version, her vocal laid bare for DJs to fiddle around with and weird folk to play on repeat. This is then turned on its head and you get everything without vocals, which kinda works but the moments when her voice is supposed to be almost solo are a bit thin without it - just a lonesome hi hat. Once the beat builds though it’s great to hear the percs a bit more clearly.
Over on the flip we have the remixes, beginning with Dntel’s geometric messing with triplet rhythms over a largely untouched vocal. Some synths have been growled up like a lumbering electro beast, til a trippy rave stab finishes things off. Hercules & Love Affair transform it into a sparser, steady roller, more subtle but still with a true-to-the-original vocal. To be honest they could have done more perhaps to depart from the original, but ah well, it’s fun times stuff that’ll get people moving.
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