‘Spotlight’ is a new addition to the blog where I review a release from the last few weeks that may have flown over the radar or didn’t make it onto the Weekly Buzz or The Hive, but still feel it needs to be covered. I may expand the series in the future to shine a “spotlight” on a specific artist or label. We’ll see how it goes!
The debut release by SØL on Bristol based label Kaarbanik Sound is the first to take the spotlight.
It’s this very release that has drawn me to both producer and label for the first time which is always refreshing and boy what a first impression it has made. Here we have three beautifully mixed tracks full of vibrancy and dynamism that leaves you feeling satisfied to the very end. With each track thoughtfully named after a type of mushroom, ‘Fungi EP‘ is both sonically and conceptually complete.
Opening with ‘Amanita’, SØL immediately displays his arsenal of synths and his absolute precision when it comes to percussion which becomes an on going theme throughout the EP. Introing with a vivid angelic synth and crisp tinkering percussion, the EP’s first drop brings in unbelievably vibrant mid range synths and a simple catchy lead. Eventually the initial lead melody is dropped and cut down into occasional stabs as the smooth yet weightiness of the low end takes centre stage. Not before long, the light angelic synths come back into play seeing you off with an instantly up lifted mood.
SØL continues to inject more ethereal vibes with ‘Shiitake’, the black forest mushroom, the mushroom of medicine. The medicinal properties of this track are apparent, soothing the soul, settling ones anxieties. At first, the raw thumping b-line fluctuates back and forth until the crystal clear percussion carries it into a more rhythmic pattern. Having the majority of the track relying on that full bodied dubby low end throughout, this one is made for the sound system.
Finally, ‘Parasol’ finishes things off. Guided in by a blissful whistle and acoustic plucks, SØL brings back the celestial tones from the opening track. Upon the drop, the plucks transform into a teasing melody alongside the bouncy rhythmical sub bass. The track breaks up as the melodic whistle is reintroduced over crisp minimal drums and textures. Break over, the low end thumps back in and the acoustic strings have transformed further into a more intricate melody which along with the pensive whistle, sees out ‘Parasol’ and the EP.
If like me, you’re always drawn to the darker brooding side of the genre, coming across an up lifting piece of music like this is always going to be refreshing. But for this EP it has made a deeper impact for me. The wistful charming melodies and all round laid back nature of the record comes evokes some nostalgic type of emotion that at times seems melancholic. Possibly thanks to the likeness classic Skream records such as ‘Dutch Flowerz’ or those beautiful synths in general, particularly on ‘Amanita‘ my favourite of the three. ‘Fungi’ EP is an easy listen yet still impactful.
KAB011 is out now and available from the Kaabanik Sound Bandcamp.