Lawrence has a knack for both ambient and deep house productions, and Yoyogi Park, the third in a trilogy of albums for the Mule Musiq label, pairs his very fine array of smooth textures with a high-momentum dancefloor undercurrent. CD and double LP editions, each with original artwork from Stefan Marx. On Mule Musiq.
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- Yoyogi Park by Lawrence
6/10 Clinton Staff review, 21 April 2016
I was looking forward to this - I don't know if I've got the volume knob turned up loud enough but I'm finding opener 'Marble Star' a bit limp. It has a pulsing housey beat and metallic synths - I seemed to enjoy it more towards the end where it dropped down to bass and percussion. I'm finding a lack of warmth in these compositions and also a lack of melodic ideas, a bit of a lack of evocative sounds and I'm not keen on the beats either.
Good start then. Tracks like 'Tensui' start off so minimal that it just sounds like someone has left an Ableton loop running. It improves when what I think is a distant guitar comes into focus and some flabby bass wobbles through the stereo. We're three tracks in and at last I'm starting to enjoy it - the distant synths are rather gorgeously floaty and give that sense of late night paranoia that I so enjoy. Similarly 'Ava' is minimal but give it enough space and time then the synth wobbles start to coagulate to give a Mouse on Mars vibe.
Precise and patient are these Germans - 'Yoyogi Park' isn't the sort of house music that is immediately thrilling, you have to kind of get in the zone. 'Blue Mountain' is possibly an album highlight - get through the first 3.38 minutes of nothing happening and some wavering oscillating synths starts bouncing around to good effect though apart from a bass thump, just like my life, the track isn't going anywhere. I'm finding that the lack of invention in the beats is causing problems in keeping my attention long enough to enjoy the way the tracks build. It's minimal, it's cold and calculated. It probably sounds completely different pumped through a massive soundsystem.
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