Whilst fundamentally a guitarist, Los Angeles based Mark Nieto delves way deeper into electronic experiments, think Denis Jones stepping into Four Tet or Gold Panda territory, with warm organic percussion and intricate found sound beats. Especially with tunes like Jacaranda, which are catchy as hell.
8/10 Jamie Staff review, 15 November 2016
Los Angeles native Combat! (Mark Nieto) has apparently been honing his skills as a guitarist for years now, as much at home on the party scene as with experimental electronics and augmenting with his own unique textures as he goes. The music he makes can sometimes be classified as ‘house’; at other times he is filed under ‘ambient’ but somehow seems at odds in both those places.
The fired-up ‘Olive Skin’ highlights his abrasively bleepy electronics rubbing against a seemingly traditional 4/4 beat, only those lively drums are cut-up and pieced together more intricately than anything Kieran Hebden has done for years. The programming and selection of drum loops are meticulous and that guitar is so infectiously gritty and LA-streetwise. Take ‘Heavy Accent’ with its organically growing and morphing offshoots, ebbs and flows of hip-hop / anticon influenced beats and odd nosdam like ear for melodic structure.
The record bursts with dazzling colour and fascinating textural contrasts. Consider my appetite whetted for more of this good shit
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