If you’re a fan of Matthew Dear‘s EP Headcage, released in January this year, you’ll remember the dense, mutating cluster of breaths, whispers and assorted technicolor sounds that coalesced into a hearty chug. Take that as Mr. Dear — the DJ/dance-music producer/experimental pop artist/bandleader – offering an early taste of what to expect from his fourth full-length Beams, the first since his 2010 shadowy masterpiece Black City.
Speaking of early tastes… Matthew just recently released “Her Fantasy,” the celebratory lead single from the album that signals its queasy optimism in classic Matthew Dear avant-pop form — that is, without verses and choruses per se, but by hustling through a series of wickedly catchy sections. The twisted internal logic of these sections becomes clear as the song progresses and builds to an ecstatic climax.
Beams, which is slated to hit stores in the U.K. and E.U. on 8/27 and in North America the next day, was recorded in Dear’s home studio and mixed at Nicolas Vernhes’ Rare Book Room studios in Brooklyn. The album evokes a day-lit dreamworld at once strange and familiar, and though its dancefloor-ready tempos, major keys, and sun-warmed synths may signal Beams as the lighter, brighter response to its predecessor, if you take a closer look you’ll see that it actually reveals a squirming mass of oddball details. Matthew’s latest productions creak and groan like anxious organisms, with slivers of guitar, electric bass and drum kit darting in and out among the synths and samples.
It may be odd to hear this former techno-wunderkind playing rock music, but the manic punk pulse of the track “Earthforms” is just one facet of Beams‘ kaleidoscopic journey. Call it a well-mixed cocktail of optimism and uneasiness or a battle between musical mischief and lyrical maturity, Beams is the latest transmission from one of pop music’s most fascinating creative minds!
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