is a French producer who has a couple of albums under his belt already and joins the HANDS label roster in 2012 with an album that will leave a permanent impression: Glossy Electronica, elaborate beat programming and mind-blowing melodies, an actually minimal album (soundwise) which seems massive by its strong emotional impact.
is preoccupied with natural events and special places, and 'Skaftafell' is the evocation of a huge and massive glacier movement like a moraine or a surge. The concept is to describe as a sound the deep and uncontrollable movement of nature, as the glacier becomes an independent entity, an animal really, untamed by civilization. Nevertheless, after human influence, nature starts to destroy itself.
The 'Intro' showcases the deep melodies, pulses and peculiar beats, downbeat and distorted, yet with a strong organic feel to them, which we shall encounter throughout the album. 'Banda Aceh' is an area in Indonesia which was horribly harmed by the 2004 tsunami, and the track features tribal beats and repetitive sounds that echo the threat. The Mexican town 'Tlahuitoltepec', casualty of a mudslide, is the eponym for a grinding and scraping beat structure. A less dismal fate is that of the 'Narssarssuaq Desert' in Greenland, which inspired Sylvgheist Maëlström
to a moody, hypnotic tune with minimal techno beats, while 'Kuthia' appears even more groove infected. Back to Greenland, its capital 'Nuuk' - and a shorter, straighter track for 'Skaftatell', followed by 'Surge', a hypnotic, vibrant piece.
Of course Iceland has its glaciers, and 'Jakobshavn Isbræ Melt' is not only an exceptionally large specimen, but also a track that will resound in your mind forever with its effective and simple melodic hook and repetitive beats. On a darker note is the sonic painting of the floods of 'Nartuby' (France); and 'Dendrite Crystal' is surely the most anorganic sounding part of 'Skaftatell', a nice bite of tasty Electronica. 'Skaftafell Jökull' is a place in Iceland subject to a constant culmination of natural forces, and the track is also the most upfront, inciting one on the album.
The closing title 'Puyehue' then releases some of that tension, and maybe it is imaginable that a brave Techno DJ will have a crowd dancing to a Chilean volcano? 'Skaftatell' impresses through strong production values and a range of wonderful ideas. It is an urgent recommendation for anyone who will fall for Electronica that is far from easily accessible, yet captivating and very deeply emotional!