Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Renfro - Mathematics (Meltwater)

The recipe for Renfro requires a variety of carefully scavenged ingredients. Locate field recordings of wild animals and sonic atmospheres. Add fragments of material ranging from NASA feeds of deep space to burning credit cards. Mix in some static, glitch, and a pinch of distortion. Now slowly fold in a melancholic melody and Tim Branney's hushed falsetto voice as he sings intricate lyrics over Atom-James Draper's electro-acoustic manipulations. That's Renfro, "meld[ing] experimental electronic musical techniques with dream-pop songwriting", and doing a damn good job at it too. I'm not big on vocals (haven't I said that before?), (I think it's something to do with constrained concepts), (or perhaps the forced structure of a 'song'), but Renfro breaks out of boxed rules and layers voice as another instrument over ambient soundscapes and light percussion fused from cliky flippity-flop bleep lo-fi pops. The duo formed in late 2005, and is based in East London and North Devon, where they have been playing with microphones and "poetics of isolation, difference and collapse". Along with the release of Mathematics, Meltwater Records will also promote with two remix EPs with contributions from Marsen Jules, Porn Sword Tobacco, AGF/Loeb and Christian Fennesz [that alone should excite your appetite!]. The instrumental sound is reminding me of Xela, Skyphone, Julien Neto, and Swod. Like Thom Yorke singing over William Basinski with dying circuits driving the beat. Favorite track: Half-Life Of Happiness. |

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