Mikel Artemiev Trio

This hybrid between Mikel Artemiev and Paul Lescallee’s fluttering sci-fi duo has the distinct feel of an orchestral pop album. Artemiev’s fluttering chords lend a bit of a mellifluous edge; Lescallee’s both soft and heavy, formal and chameleonic, mewling and hummed. However, the odd moment is when Artemiev’s electronics appear to thaw, suggesting a subtle, almost tender touch.

The opening tone of the first track “Video Games” is a fade from stuttering to a smoky, dizzy coo, while Artemiev’s keyboard chords that shimmer out of the mix suggest an impending monotony. The title track, with its choruses of keys and keyboard, is a long, slow-burning composition built from soft, creeping voices.

The rhythm section of “Breakfast” and “The Answer” is nice. But the occasional droning bass note or background drone could be more suitable for a guitar solo. “The Answer” is a droning, slow-motion ballad, shot through with a bit of power electronics, while the choruses of “Coffee” and “Get Up” are a bit too long.

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(Music courtesy of Velaya Borona)