Monday, 26 April 2010



Righteous Fists Of Harmony

Funky left-field electronic beat-smith Daedelus last surfaced in 2008, with his Love To Make Music To album.

Heavily influenced by the poppier end of break-beat driven rave scene of 91, Daedelus’ music showcased an originality of style that belied its mass-market influences. Fast forward to 2010, and Daedelus has re appeared on Flying Lotus’ Brainfeeder imprint, with Righteous Fists of Harmonyshowcasing a totally new introspective and brooding direction. With an artist as maverick as Daedelus , there is no shame in pushing the boundaries of your sound to create a new direction. Indeed the constant desire to innovate is what separates electronic and beat music from the worst of its plodding rock contemporaries.

However in this instance, it’s a shift in focus that is as confusing as it is different. Instead of looking to the heyday of outdoors raving, Daedalus has seemingly immersed himself in a psychedelic haze of stripped back ‘trip-hop’ and slow burning atmospherics. Similar to the introspective route mined by Massive attack over the last decade, the album delivers a slo-mo fusion sound that doesn’t quite work.

Not to say there aren’t some nice touches at work here, such as the dreamy Order Of The Golden Dawn, featuring the shimmering vocals of his wife Laura Darling, or the tense syncopation of Fin De Siècle that creates a tension sadly missing from the rest of the tracks on offer. In fact the majority of the album rolls very smoothly into one tripped out downbeat passage, teetering perilously close to the edge of mediocrity.

Whilst it’s great to see producers like Daedalus stretching their wings, in this instance its a case of too much atmosphere and not enough soul.

Toby Hemming

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