Ramadanman: Ramadanman EP (Hessle)
Handsome 6-tracker from David Kennedy on the consistently solid Hessle label. Opener “I Bet You” recalls the disembodied soul of Burial with its looping, re-pitched melancholy vocal samples (“Please…. talk to me”) and sets the tone quite well. The rhythm section is far more spry than that of Burial, though, full of the crisp and clean hand drum and hi-hat sounds that characterize much of Kennedy’s music. As I’ve expressed numerous times here, I usually enjoy the grey area outside of what could be considered more typical dubstep, where rhythm and cadence are perhaps less predictable, the palette of sounds is less abrasive as well as more varied, and the overall sensibility lends itself to crossing over into different sorts of DJ sets and mixes. The melancholy vibe of “I Beg You” doesn’t necessarily bleed into the rest of the EP, though — many of its tracks seem focused much more intently on rhythm and syncopation and are far less concerned with evoking a mood. These tracks are less immediately moving to me but they are still successful — regardless of the track and however stripped down it may be, there is still quite a bit of detail in its arrangement. “Bleeper” is especially fun with its plink-plonk percussion sounds and kitchen sink aesthetic. But when he closes with “Don’t Change For Me,” he blows it back out into something more lush and elaborate, sort of the uplifting bookend companion to the gloomy opener.
Watch/listen: I Beg You