Wednesday, July 15, 2020
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Artist: Heterotic
Title: Love & Devotion
Format: CD
Label: Planet Mu (@)
Rated: *****
Mike Paradinas smoothes the roughest edges of his sound off on the occasion of this lovely collaborative project with his partner-in-life and partner-in-art Lara Rix-Martin and he seems to power this belt sander on since the preamble of this debut release under the guise of Heterotic, "Bliss", which starts on pretty heavenly organs and go on by sliding on sonic elements, which resembles past techno-ambient acts such as Jeczalik's Art of Silence, Oliver Lieb's Paragliders or Humate as well as some garage-house stuff, which unambigously spurts on the following "Blue Lights" together with grated 80ies electronic pop and flickering neon tubes, which highlights the shutter curtain of doped melancholy, evoked by great vocal interpretation by talented folk singer Gravenhurst aka Nick Talbot from Warp's stable, who superbly renders a feeling of intimate distance across feeble gummy heartbeat-like bumps, sizzling beams and slow smackers of claps on "Wartime". The sci-fi symphony on "Robo Corp" fluctuates between mementoes from Blade Runner or Philip K.Dick's novels and echoes of Depeche Mode before the freezing chorus of baby drudges and precedes a couple of proper highlights of the entire album, "Devotion", where Gravenhurst enhances the ventricular fibrillation inspired by flowing sounds, electronic gamelan, heavenly choirs and lukewarm basslines, which could resemble some stuff by Royksopp, and the emotionally intense "Knell", where a bright piano gently overlies on knells of a clock and an artifical respirator, which seem to siphon lukeworm blood into a dying body. Sticky bleeping gavels beats the rhythm of a sort of slow ghostly waltzer on the dozily charming "Slumber", where Gravenhurst's singing vaguely resembles Tor Lundvall's one. The limping "Fanfare" and its dark and gloomy whispering ends this litmus test of tastefulness and style by this great "hermaphrodite" project, which I cannot but recommend.


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