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On their newest LP, m1nk provide a haunting middle ground between the dytopian downbeat atmospheres and delicate vocal aesthetic of Portishead or Massive Attack while encompassing the wandering electro-acoustic minimalism of late-70's ambient. Take 'Devil Under' for instance, kicking off with syncopated percussive shards and insectile shivers before staggering into the song proper, a slowly unfurling distillation of perfectly measured fretless bass and nu-jazz percussives holding the piece together despite the ever-present chaotic influence threatening to pull the song apart at the seams. 

Elsewhere, trappy glitches and spoken word take over, 'The Far Side' being an excellent example of how Erika's voice can easily turn from a sultry, atmospheric aid to a synth-pop falsetto within the space of a couple minutes. The more meditative sections really show their beauty when barely adorned save for a couple reverbed vocal echoes. The superb psychedelic jam of 'Love Sign' is a great example of this and goes to show that while momentum is an important thing to build, it can also be accrued through layering atmospheric devices, slowly progressing from a subtly meandering echoic cascade into a rich cataclysm of perfectly curated drone. 

While the songwriting is top notch here, it is the way the sounds are layered and their perfect cohabitation of the same sonic space that really sets this apart, with each instrument and effect perfeclty sculpted to increase their dynamic intensity without sacrificing their minimal but effective aura. 

STAFF COMMENTS

Barry says: Bloody lovely this, haunting echoes and shadowy vocals beautifully rising above the snapping percussion and pulsing basses. Rich with atmosphere but flecked with light streaks to keep things from getting too introspective.


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