Thursday, December 24, 2009

Review: [BP047] Eskazed - Overload Reviewed by: Pete Woolley on Blacklash Magazine

Over the current crop of French electro-purveyors – Feadz, Kavinsky and Teenage Bad Girl to name but three fancies - Eskazed is a current favourite. His debut, Overload, is a fantastic release that has seemingly fallen under the radar. Sourcing a wide range of influences, notably hip-hop and trip-hop abstractions, but also, as is evident on The Final Wish, there is a healthy appreciation of rock melodrama. Some tentative treatment of the classic guitar lick, which itself could’ve been pinched from an (unfortunately) underwritten indie anthem, provides a late zeal to an otherwise thorough album.

Opening track, The Black Sheep Revisited compounds Eskazed’s sound into a compelling introduction. Opening amid a broad Boards of Canada influence, synths loop over and through each other in a spatial plain that is arguably better suited to the mid bugged out halcyon days of the 90s, but it’s Eskazed’s cuts that really present this work as something to admire. A solo, boxy drum fill augments the hip hop influence, and wakes the track from its slumber. The stuttering beat continues layered over and under an injection of vocal and melody.

‘Seethe’ pushes onwards, whirring warning sounds drop the track into darker reaches than its sleepy precursor, and knowing we can’t float on like that forever, Eskazed places a perfect foil. And it’s a pattern that persists because he has produced a record, and not just another series of songs to add credence to a label compilation. It might not be an album to push any boundaries, but simply one that deserves to be heard and enjoyed.

Reviewed by: Pete Woolley