The Future Eve feat. Robert Wyatt

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The Future Eve feat. Robert Wyatt | KiTsuNe/Brian The Fox
FLAU (2xLP/2xCD/DL)

Japanese composer The Future Eve arrives on the Flau label with an exquisite album featuring vocals and keyboards by the legendary Robert Wyatt.  Wyatt had a musical idea named “Brian The Fox”, an idea untethered to tempo, and this looseness permeates through the twelve tracks here.  Stark drones morph into bubbling electronics and vocals are smudged into spectral after-images.

The album is made up of differing versions of Wyatt’s singular idea.  The first four tracks employ washes of synths and processed samples, sounding at once playful and experimental.  There’s a hauntological presence going on at times, the way the vocals are treated with reverb and delay.

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The second suite of tracks are all variations of the title “kitsune ring version” and offer, for my money, a more satisfying sound. “Kitsune” is Japanese for fox, so these literally translate into the title track.  These eight tracks are more subdued and melancholy, their production warmer and richer than the preceding four.  Wyatt’s vocals are pushed more to the fore here, using less effects processing which lends them a shinier tone.  The penultimate track here is particularly minimal, and my favourite piece on the album.  Lowercase ambient sounds lay an ominous foundation upon which various rumbling tones come and go.  Restrained yet evocative, it’s an interesting contrast to the final track that puts the focus back on Wyatt’s voice.

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