If you've never heard his songs 'Artifice' and 'Lessons', I'd highly recommend them. SOHN has only officially been around for a couple of years but as soon as he hit the ground he proved himself as both a talented songwriter and a very clever electronic musician, mixing the two gifts into one rather addictive package. Exciting new LP Rennen marks his return to the airwaves after a 2 year wait from fans. Released as Vinyl LP and CD on the 4AD label.
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Sounding at first like if Sam Smith was a lot weirder, Sohn recently relocated from Vienna to Los Angeles (where do they get the money for such jetsetting?) for his second full length album but it still has an icy cold and at times harsh feel. The voice is a relatively straightforward take on Brit School soul but it's the programming and daring production that makes this stand out from the blue-eyed brigade. It takes me three tracks to realise this despite the minimal heart beat of opener 'Hard Liquor' with it's bluesy inflections and eerie electronic pulse. No I wait until about half way through 'Signal' before allowing the album to click. It's here where the cut up electronics start to intertwine and the song breaks out of it's Sampha like strut that I'm enjoying myself. This is a pretty expert coagulation of oddball electronics (say, like something Oneohtrix Point Never did on the Anohni album) and the sort of emotional r&b made by the likes of Jamie Isaac.
Sohn retains a rawness throughout and doesn't scrub. Check the farting bass on 'Dead Wrong' which belches underneath the inspired vocals. There is the odd piece of over emoting and hints of unnecessary autotune but at it's best it straddles just the right line of saccharine. Sohn achieves this by placing sonically daring shards amid his smooth soul croon. Tracks like 'Falling' are where everything ticks along correctly, the voice like a horn, the percussion like metal bins being pushed down a flight of stairs.
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