Label: Low Company – Low14 Format: Vinyl, LP Country: UK Released: 2022 Genre: Electronic Style: Experimental, Abstract
*ANF Upfront exclusive*
Potential album of the year contender via the always interesting Low Company label.
Yuta Matsumura is a name that didn’t ring any bells for me. He has been active in the Australian underground since 2014 mainly as a member of Sydney hardcore band The Oily Boys. But how you get from there to this lp of elegant dubby avant-pop is anyone’s guess. I’m no student of Hardcore. But it’s fascinating how occasionally an artist like Yuta will appear out of a scene, governed by what seem to me to be a pretty strictly policed set of aesthetic boundaries, making super-inventive almost genre-less music. I am reminded of that now pretty unfashionable moment in the late 00s where all kinds of slightly ordinary US punk and garage revival bands started making records influenced by Chrome or the Residents. I say this record is almost genre-less, but it gleefully pulls on all sorts of threads that run through the last 40 years of independent music. I can hear the brooding post-prog of Camberwell Now, the serious young man in the reggae record shop pop of Scritti Politti, the widescreen ambient rock of late Talk Talk, even a hint ofGo-Betweensesque grumpy lyricism. There are also touches of post-minimal dance production and the unholy meeting point between euro-goth/EBM and pop-trance. A heady brew then. There are however some more recent precedents for all of this. Beyond the Valley of the Ultrahits by Richard Youngs and any number of under the radar releases from the Thomas Bush/Guy Gormley parallel universe plough this unlikely furrow too. Anyhow, Aside from what it might remind me of, the best thing about this record is that it’s stuffed full of hooks. Splicing bits of music’s stylistic history together is all very well. But often it results in something strangely devoid of actual content. It really helps if the songs are as affecting and accomplished as they are here. This it the kind of record that once it’s over you want to hear it again straight away. And how many of those have you bought recently? (Mint / New - with insert)
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