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Erika: Hexagon Cloud (Interdimensional Transmissions)

Erika Sherman has lurked in the shadows for years as one half of Detroit electro outfit Ectomorph (having replaced Gerald Donald, a.k.a. Dopplereffekt, Japanese Telecomm, and countless others, in 2000). Ectomorph’s influence is undeniable, even though their output was erratic at best and stopped in 2005. Hexagon Cloud is Erika’s first solo breakout, and it’s a good one. The tracks on Hexagon Cloud are minimal, not a single unnecessary sound or detail. It shares this much in common with most of the Ectomorph stuff I’ve heard, and is something I’ve also always liked about fellow Detroit act Adult.’s early stuff — it seems simple at first, but it’s actually intensely detail-oriented. Less can indeed be more, but you’d better be sure what is there is done just right. She gets the balance right, erring on the side of less as more usually to tracks’ benefit. I’m reminded of classic Dan Bell tracks that revolve around the bare minimum of elements (particularly the staggered bassline of “No. 3”), though Erika’s aesthetic is spacier and more sublime, less punchy. It’s fantastic late night listening, either for a dark night drive or for the wee hours at home. With the exception of the ethereal introductory track and closer “Tunneling,” most of these tracks propel forward with a consistent, heady groove. The sequence makes perfect sense, too, gaining inertia as it goes. The clean, stripped down arrangements of “Tow Ride” and “Gardeners” (especially that odd warbling melodic lead on the latter) are irresistible, sounding just as good on a pair of decent headphones as they would on a dark dancefloor. Highly recommended for anyone interested in the darker side of minimal electro.

Listen to clips on SoundCloud (embed disabled)

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