Calum MacRae had been steadily producing improving material from his bedroom for eight years before he started to get noticed in 2017 under the name Lanark Artefax, subsequently remixing Bjork among others. His latest, three-track 12” single ‘Corra Linn’ continues his great work, coming on like a sensory overload of synthesisers, ethereal melodies and heavenly atmospheres.
Vinyl 12" £9.99 NMBRS63
12" on Numbers.
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A most welcome return from Calum MacRae who certainly appears to prefer quality over quantity when it comes to putting out records - averaging just one release a year since his debut EP on Cong Burn, followed by killers for Lee Gamble’s UIQ label and Whities. Numbers have picked him up for ‘Corra Linn’, a gem of a 3-tracker that lifts off with slivers of manic spliced amens cutting through ethereal angelic synthesized vocal and multiple layers of shattering electronics that gleam like iridescent jewels... oh and that bassline totally hits the sweet spot. Next up is ‘Moo Orphaned Drift’ and the penny drops just how much this guy is into his digital synthesizers, which to me is totally refreshing. Those machines are so overlooked in this age of analogue/modular snobbery and he manages to elicit such elegant, crisp sounds from them as this EP evidences. His sounds rebound and ricochet all over the place as percussion seems to untangle revealing beautiful melancholy passages. ‘Ferthenheap’ has a more sombre mood with its weeping keys and snippets of children’s voices “Here’s your 5p back”. Nice to hear him in a totally different mode, although it still sounds totally Lanark Artefax - he’s for sure really found and honed his own sound.
For sure there’s an Aphex vibe to these tracks -- indeed the man himself has been heard dropping his ‘Touch Absence (Intimidating Stillness Mix)’ track, but despite similar tropes like the indecipherable vocal samples, this guy is so much more than your average wannabe clone. His production skills are pure fire and he just nails a total grin-inducing vibe that would have fitted perfectly on Rephlex if it were still active. Can’t stop rinsing this one.
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