Combinations. Some things just work better together, Pancakes, lemon and sugar-take one element out and you have an inferior pancake. Jean-Luc Goddard and art students, Jean Pierre Melville films and trenchcoats, some things just go hand in hand. Fela Kuti and De La Soul, yeah that works, that works very nicely indeed. Gummy Soul captures the innate beauty of a good mashup-that you can enhance a verse with an instrumental or an instrumental with a verse for the better. Even better is the sense of the uncanny, the sense of the unexpected when you hear familiar words with unfamiliar music which can completely change the atmosphere of the song. This isn’t so much the case with Fela Kuti and De La Soul, these tracks retain the laid back vibe of the originals but they sound natural this pairing hasn’t been forced they just blend into one another like a gin and tonic. This is a free album you would be a ruddy fool not to dabble.
L’Orange recorded two of my favourite albums of 2012 though both were recorded in 2011, The Manipulation EP and Old Soul are both excellent examples of concept triphop with consistent themes and samples. L’Orange blends the old and the new without being gimmicky constructing well rounded and finished songs where it would be easy to leave songs as half finished ideas. Haunting horns are punctuated with eerie vocal samples, the bass holds the boat steady while other instruments bleed with reverb. The drums gives everything a modern hiphop rhythm. The Mad Writer is an apt title, each track feels like we are exploring this bizarre world where the antique clashes with the modern rhythms of life, everything hisses and crackles in darkness, comes in and out of focus…it is willfully strange and I love it.