RECUE - LEFTOVER LOVE
Recue (Riku Annala) is a Helsinki-based electronica artist who creates music that combines a number of electronica’s sub-genres. His influences span from IDM to dubstep, house, and even ambient music. This eclectic taste allows Recue to weave together interesting pieces that sidestep easy classification. “Leftover Love,” his third album and first released by new label Audiobaum, shows this eclectic nature and its development over time. It is a collection of live tracks, jams, and sound projects that he has worked on over the past six years. As such, the album reveals Recue’s evolution as a musician and his search for his unique musical voice.
The album’s finer tracks show a healthy tension between or a willingness to shift among different styles. “Kasvoton2,” for instance, has the best sense of build of any track on the album. It begins with a rather minimal beat and chilled out atmosphere, which slowly evolves through dubstep to a house-influenced groove. The change-ups and shifting tension make it one of the album’s most memorable tracks.
Other nice tracks include “Deuxentun,” which was originally made for the Sundance Music Festival in 2006. It shares similar sound design methods and melodies to those found in Plaid’s wonderful album “Double Figure.” While definitely sounding Plaid-influenced, “Deuxentun” still demonstrates Recue’s light touch as a producer. “Sensime,” also made in 2006, also helps show the warmer side of the album. Its melody is rather simple, but the nice drum programming and the background’s interplay between ethereal chords and staccato elements make this mellow track one of the album’s nicest listens. Further, “Morning Dew” features the best buildup of any of the tracks on the album, and its sudden release leaves the listener a satisfied customer.
Not every track on the album, however, is as memorable. While every track is technically competent, they do not all seize the listener by the ears. “Gimli glider,” for instance, shows Recue’s willingness to shift up his musical style midway through the track. It starts with a darker intro, and in the middle house and other influences take over. But while a competent track, “Gimli glider” lacks something extra to keep the listener’s attention. I had a similar response to “Weevil.” While its has an appealing acid bass line and mangled beats, it failed in the end to keep my interest.
“Leftover Love” is overall an enjoyable listen, but it is neither breathtakingly fresh nor an overwhelmingly exciting album. I never found myself jumping out of my seat, nor did I find myself emotionally affected. Nonetheless, Recue is a talented producer with a good sense for arrangement. He shows a deft hand for sound design and production. Further, he seamlessly weaves together different genres of electronic music, meshing appealing and complex drum programming with nice melodies. This might not make my list of best albums of the year, but with “Leftover Love” Recue has released a pretty good album.