The 27 tracks of Ahnnu’s World Music / Perception form a strange tapestry. Self-consciously digital and made up of synth washes, unidentified clicks and hums, and lots more besides, this might well suit fans of recent productions by Oneohtrix Point Never, Holly Herndon and James Ferraro. Double LP on Leaving Records.
8/10 Laurie Staff review, 11 November 2015
Ahnnu is an LA-based beatmaker / texturizer who dabbles with high concept electronic music, releasing mostly on Stones Throw child label Leaving Records. Leaving have done away with the whole single-album focus thing and pressed both of Ahnnu’s last 2 records into one 2LP package. Nifty.
The man pulls samples from everywhere and anywhere it seems - presumably the meaning behind the term ‘world music’, hopefully not the usual, mildly vicious use. That 2013 release is warm and muffled, his use of sound is like taking a bath in samples, with some hiss for a pillow and crackle as your hot water bottle. Lots seems to be taken from jazz, some Rhodes-y, some double bass-y, all pure atmospheric syrup. The little pieces exist in varying states of beatiness, from the seance of opener ‘Gala’ to the groove of ‘Mirror’, with ‘Relative Research’ occupying the space between, the rhythm falling over itself and the sound sources indistinct. It’s sort of like FlyLo without the crazy edge, as if he’s permanently on cloud nine. A permanent cloud of marijuana smoke, that is, in case that wasn’t clear enough. The kind Robin floats into work every day on. The B side of this one has a few remixes by folks I don’t recognise, but they’re all equally great, none straying too far from the originals.
Over to 2015’s Perception, and things get a lot more complex, sounding quite a lot like an electronic jazz trio playing ambient instrumental hip hop using only pre-60s discs. The tracks are more layered and less muffled here, showing a breadth of imagination and rich melody that shows the man developing in real-time, whoever he is. Leland Jackson, that’s who.
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