Seefeel: Faults EP (Warp)
The electronic music community probably breathed a deep sigh of relief when word came around of a new Seefeel EP this year. The outfit’s last release was the severe (ch-vox) EP from 1996, and Faults feels utterly joyous after those stark, minimal, melancholy exercises. The chorus of “Faults” is uplifting, and the arrangement that accompanies it shows that Mark Clifford and company are back in top form. The repetition found in much of Seefeel’s backcatalogue is here in full effect, but it’s also combined with references to current trends like the wobble bass of dubstep and the broken beat that’s pervaded nearly every subset of electronic music by now. The sound is upfront and crisp, without a lot of reverb or depth applied to the mix. It lends a dryness that causes these tracks to feel quite immediate. “Crowds” feels at once new but familiar, with a looping, repetitive, hypnotic hook that recalls their strongest material from Quique. “Folds” is the inversion of “Faults,” featuring the same vocals in a different pattern, while “Clouds” closes out the EP in a beatless haze, sounding closest to where they left off with their last EP, but looking upward rather than into the bleak void. A new full-length is imminent, and I’m eager to hear what they do next.