Saturday, April 10, 2010

Toro Y Moi - Causers Of This

Blissful melodies, tender voices, nostalgic atmospheres, analog synths... yep, this is another record to be included under the term chillwave, the genre du jour that is hip to like and blog about. Nothing wrong with it anyway, as this is a "movement" that has already seen some great music under its waves, from the likes of Memory Tapes (Seek Magic) or Neon Indian (Psychic Chasms). And if chillwave has a very identifiable sound on its foundations, it still leaves some room for imagination, with each one of these projects having a very singular approach. Ultimately, this is something that Chazwick Bundick not only does very well, he actually takes it some steps further, grabbing its trademark elements, and chewing and spitting them out in a very unique form.
With techniques better-associated with hip-hop, Causers of This also works as a thesis on the possibilities of the cut+paste function, with songs that seem like incomplete sketches, to be filled out by our imagination. In the meantime, the intricate sounds are mostly abstract, fusing themselves around the songs and burying them in complex layers that seem to marry perfectly with the beautiful multi-tracked vocal harmonies, giving the whole-project an unsuspected psychedelic flavour.
But there's something else that takes Causers of This high above and stops it from being just a clever gimmick: this is music that is able to actually touch us, communicating strong emotions... in this case, the emotions of dealing with distant memories as if processed by a vintage ZX Spectrum computer, caught on super8 film, or found in an old polaroid. (8/10)

Toro Y Moi - Low Shoulder (mp3 via Oh! Inverted World)

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