Monday, May 14, 2012
Yalls - Fantasy on Gold Robot Records
I've been trying to keep up with Hunter over at Gold Robot, and doing a terrible job... just getting to this Yalls single now which was released a couple of months ago now at least. Yalls seems to be the solo project of Dan Casey and is one of those incredibly dense, painstakingly crafted electronic pop soups which can only ever be just a taste of this enormous meal Yalls is ultimately after.
"Settle Down" sets the everything-will-be-appropriated tone with a crazy panning, cheap rhythm section, busted keyboard samples, and a distressed organ being pushed through some kind of faulty speaker, catching it's weazey breath. Yalls is of course, happy to force fit this rag tag crew of sounds, approaching it all in a sparkly pop-fun way, composing with panned, gated high hats and carnival organs swinging into another bouncy loop. Vocally there's a choir of Polyphonic Spree sounding voices, serious, trained melody makers all solidly harmonizing, becoming this enormous pile of probably just Dan's. It goes underwater in a psyche section of plinky high piano keys, off rhythm toms and bleeps from an old 808, drawing a lot of inspiration from straight up disco. All these kind of dance elements but skillfully hacked together in a kind of fun haphazard way like something Odelay era. Not as pronounced and specifically dated but Dan's spent weeks and weeks playing with this track finding all the possible ways to keep it sounding new. The few times everything drops out and they're left with a new remnant that was hidden underneath everything...they just turn around and tease it to the surface again. Lots of fun with old keyboards and battling rhythms that don't match up for a second to laying on this pile of magic future, funtown disco again.
B-Side "Real Fantasy" is just an electric piano and a single direct voice... still playing with a lot of fun weirdo sounds, coming up with a bassline out of a stuttery low end thump, and looser than the flipside with the vocal messing with a nasaly soul sound. All chopped up and going for a big multilayerd chorus again. These electronics in whatever way they're reassembled sounds completely contemporary, like a rewinding tape recorder in the late '90s. It's gigantically playing with DJ tools and dance culture in an experimental-pop way with a sped up thin acoustic. There isn't a single sound that hasn't been processed into oblivion for the sake of surprising fun. Playing with those clear precise points as much as the broad swaths of hiss, because Dan's not keeping it completely sterile. Like the next one, "Gave Away and Broke" where a hyper rhythm becomes a larger reference point, like a crazy experiment to take an impossible BPM and build anything useable around it. Impenetrably dense, an inconceivable number of hours spent on reverse organs, wah guitar, late night pulg switchery, while staying restrained on vocal it's a headspinning whirl of that mixup ride, the one that keeps spinning faster and you try not to barf holding onto that metal ring in the center.
On cream colored heavyweight vinyl from Gold Robot Records. These were made to be remixed and your wish is granted with the bonus digital only tracks. Check out "Settle Down":