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Friday, 13 August 2010

SubVersion Stop 103: Badmammal - Tapestop EP (goodluck/badluck CD / download)

Essentially, Badmammal’s second EP, “Tapestop”, is downtempo, but is so overwhelmingly groovy, it forms a portable dance floor. This quality transcends his back catalogue, elevating everything beyond shoegazer cliche and sugar-fuelled euphoria. Those expecting shallow caricature will be disappointed. But who’d have guessed consistency going against perceptual grain?

That’s no bad thing: synths on “Another Bed I Know” chirp their chords like a backing track to an 80s Prince movie, while “Down And Up” recalls The Cure tuning up, then swept through a wind tunnel of ramshackle drum shuffles, Slowdive-in-a-blender guitar figures, the changeable riffs rapturous and perfectly juxtaposed to “Go On”, where space blossoms, handclaps and shakers adorn a pumping beat, simple and effective melodies captivate like chicken to a hungry bull terrier, always awaiting the next move from the speaker. Breaking down on angelic pads, shifting your focus to Badmammal’s uncannily futuristic sound combinations, the expectations suggest a staple not quite yet tacked; a goal on its way to completion.

The guitar is a malleable instrument, mainly entrenched in the field of psychedelia. Badmammal’s relationship with electronica comes to the fore, Orbital-esque, on “Short Days”, where guitar parts are looped over a crisp rhythm, timbres glossy, structure slowly forming new layers, as is so typical of his laid-back approach to production and life. For the listener, satisfaction is reliable if you’re stressed from a day of indecision, unfulfilled objectives, fractured friendships or whatever obstructs a to b. The five tracks on “Tapestop”, albeit not life-altering, are hugely enjoyable slices of funky electronica, and for fans of Bonobo, Ninja Tune and even Flying Lotus, should be duly investigated.

Purchase: Mp3 release

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