Container by Shoeg

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Shoeg | Container
Orange Milk Records (CS/DL)

Barcelona-based artist Shoeg (Carlos Martorell) has recently released Container through Orange Milk Records. The tape is broken into two lengthy tracks, or sides – Movement 1-17 and Movement 18-25 respectively. At first its glitchy, rounded with tactile electronic signals that slowly pour outward and meander like a lost machine trapsing through the retro debris of 70’s progressive electronica. The whole vibe has a bit of a tilt factor. It’s curious, fun/ny and bright/bold. There are underpinnings of gaming sounds, but it is a fluid affair, nothing like a strait sample, just an impression.

One of the things I am enjoying about this recording is its outsider-ness. It’s double-take different. In one moment there are a whole bunch of bright melodies clashing, then if you look away suddenly it is a bunch of broken static particles. What sounds like hovering mechanical engineering over a set of silky drones that slowly scrape the edges in a tumbling mix of effects.

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Impressed by the way this seems to mask its technology, a bit from column old school, a bit in the moment, and all very futuristic – overall this is an incredibly active, yet concurrently featherlite. Container floats in a new auditory space, at least one in which these seasoned ears haven’t traveled too often. The combination of variant sonics, some mechanism, ratcheting into position, watery interludes, and drifting foggy backdrops gives the whole thing a perfectly unfixed vantage point. This is only underscored by the eye-popping surreal cover by Keith Rankin.

Part two opens super quietly, and pops with a bit of scaled down industrialism as a flourish. Martorell has a subtle touch, and a wide scope when it comes to sound design. This could easily be a soundtrack one of those very abstract contemporary psychological horror flicks. The pace is stoic, but the sudden jut-out shifts keep the listener directly connected throughout. This is muted, erratic and stylish, sometimes at the same time. Highs, lows, peaks, valleys, and the sweet trill of Fairlight sounding synths that are a fleeting throwback to early 70’s electronic music.

Very highly recommended. You will not be disappointed.

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