If Google Translate is to be believe this is one of the most insightful reviews of Small Town by the Sea so far. Pretty sure it’s the first one to mention the Burial influence. Still amazed nobody’s mentioned Monolake, though.
"Samuel Macklin is English but emigrated there a few years ago in Vancouver, this small town near the sea which inspired his fifth Elpee. "Small Town By The Sea” is his second embodiment of Aagoo, an adventurous label in New Jersey which houses among other works of KK Null, Blevin Blectom, Philippe Petit, AU, Xiu Xiu and Colin Stetson.
This new album is not fundamentally different from the previous. One finds chiseled experimental atmosphere that made the reputation of the artist and allowed him to share many dates with Oneohtrix Point Never and Loscil. But there is still a renewal since Macklin incorporates for the first time micro-rhythms and some bits of unstructured voice. There is also the presence of field recordings as homage forces, the album is full of samples recorded in Vancouver sounds. It is also close by the gentle rocking of the waves Jericho Beach.
It is therefore in the presence of the work the most ambitious and the most complete discography of Connect_icut. A remarkable fusion of glitch electronica, noise and sound of abstractions, skillfully psychedelic and relatively affordable.
However, the disc opens with the most airtight piece in my opinion, the austere "Bird Internet. Gathered cold by the songs of birds chirping and inhuman voice curly, it is difficult to enter this universe is UAVs and micro scratches supported by ghostly beats almost martial. Despite this climate a bit tight, some trance sets and includes regular comparisons with Oneohtrix Point Never and Oval.
"Tennis Players” is a glitch revisits a piece of Australian group Otouto. The charming voice of the singer Hazel Brown (collaborator among other Serengeti) is tortured and finely chopped but retains some post-nuclear poetry.
Then comes the excellent “Bathrom Mirror” and its river drones. Repetitive bass, almost menacing, like a knell, gives an atmosphere of funeral procession, Mass transique the most electronica song on the album.
In “74 Guitars" appears inevitably a sample of guitar in the middle of a string of sounds that come and go. Evanescent dronique melody through these abstract and psychedelic sound layers. Some bits of the Sunday Morning Celesta arise sporadically, although tormented by the Max / MSP, the software used by Macklin.
The last two parts conclude masterfully "Small Town By The Sea”. "Big Siobhán" offers a demonic progression. Minimalist and haunting melody that runs through the piece gives it a stunning atmosphere, almost claustrophobic reinforced loop mutant voice. It is not far from the world of Burial. And "Cat Town” final we immersed for 11 minutes in dreamlike climates where ambient light wind drones.
In short, a great sound experience both enveloping and threatening, exciting and disturbing, which should be reported, enjoys relatively different mixes on CD and vinyl (on furrow versions are elongated and more ethereal). Highly recommended for fans of the genre.”