Send me your track


Kettel - Myam James 2

KETTEL - MYAM JAMES 2 (Sending Orbs)

It’s always wonderful to hear instrumentation being played with a youthful zest. After years of hearing electronic music, a musician being able to express themself without the aid of samples, sequencers and software is all too rare. And although his love of the romantic side of things means that the compositions are often flushed with too much exuberance, there’s a naive sense of endeavour that makes Dutch producer Reimer Eising’s music always enjoyable. He’s been somewhat prolific with his Kettel alias, this being his 10th album since 2001, and whilst “Myam James 2” never strays far from the crystalline IDM that he has made his name with, there’s enough in the structures of his songs to satisfy.

Indeed, from the opener “Kingscourt Imp”, with its faint hint of Bach in the archaic harpischords interweaving with subtle acid lines, Eising shows his increasing aptitude with lush arrangements that belong firmly in the romantic camp. It’s cinematic, and at times with some songs lasting only a short time, the sudden sound of programmed drum beats seems to dilute proceedings somewhat. He does redeem matters with the keen rush of “Boekebaas”, but the traditional grace of the subtler songs wins through mostly. From a narrative perspective the album doesn’t pick up until the end with a 5 song run , aided by the strongest,  “Kitana” which reminded me of Plaid at their very best, and closers “Memory Steps” and “Fish Creek” demonstrate a more reflective approach to songwriting that is perhaps lacking elsewhere. This little group of songs stand out somewhat against the rest and show that a touch more emotion can go a long way. The album is perhaps a little too long, and 3 or 4 songs could have been culled. 

However, these seem like small quibbles when one considers the overall grandiose statement of Eising’s intent. He is without doubt a musician and composer of formidable talent, and this album should go a long way in showing it to a greater audience. Whilst there are traces of the sort of anodyne rhythms that lace far too much of this genre, Eising makes up for it with widescreen melodies that leave a lasting trace. Fans of Aphex Twin’s more pastoral moments will savour this album.

Toby Frith


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