E Ruscha V - Who Are You
E Ruscha V
Who Are You
When you have listened to over a thousand records in four years very little starts to surprise you. That is why critics are also so fucking hard for things that are surprising; their brains are cooked with listening to so much music and something new gives them a fresh injection of that good music they crave. It's something to tell people about, it's something to treasure for that briefest of moments while it's still new. That is how this debut record from LA electronic producer E Ruscha V sounds; totally new. The title track has this almost Island Breeze to it, but doesn't become some kind of ukulele thing, instead it keeps this electronic beat on the ground and just sort of swirls around that. It's a mesmerizing and transportative experience. There is such a light touch used here but still such a great slickness. This record is like nothing you've really heard before and these little ad libs often act as almost catroonish punctuation. You find yourself getting lost in tracks like "Gnarly Waves" as you can feel the push pull of the Ocean currents swirling around you. It's not often you can get such a vivid sense of place in nature from very electronic music but E Ruscha V makes it work. The occasional influx of voice also acts as a grounding point, bringing you back down to earth if you may have drifted to far into the clouds. The ambient nature of the music is really boosted by the best really being maintained, it allows you to get wiggly and spacey while still keeping your feet on the floor. ON a track like "Lights Passing By" you find yourself desperately pleading for the beat to drop because the tension is so beautifully high.
Some tracks like "In the Woods" feel more like Kenny G type of stuff because the saxophone feels so one ht nose. However as the song progresses the laser beams and skitters come in giving the track this really incredible diversity. E Ruscha V never feels lost in the exploration, even if the tracks don't feel all that unified. The sounds are similar, but the environment of each track is unique. "Roots and Branches" can feel a bit psycadellically jam bandish but those moments are only brief. If you are looking for edgy or gritty than this album has nothing for you, but the charm of it is just how pleasant it is. This statement may be taking away from it though because in terms of production there is a massive amount going on with highly complex arrangements, but they come across so silty smooth that you hardly even notice. This feels alot like Daft Punk's Random Access Memories in that it scratches the yacht rock vibe, but E Ruscha V pushes the tech aspect so much further. You're not sailing on a yacht with champagne in hand, you're on some Starliner streaming through a multicolored asteroid belt drinking some alien cocktail with smoke coming out of it. The album's closer "All of a Sudden" closes on this almost Four Tet like skittering stings sound and just leaves you with this totally bright amazing feeling. I found this record to be a fantastic piece of music, and one that doesn't need to beat you over the head to be wonderful. Sometimes subtlety speaks volumes.
8.9 out of 10