• Jega - Geometry

    Reviewed by Markkus Rovito (Harmony Central)

    Jega - Geometry

    I offer up Geometry as further proof that all the equipment needed to make futuristic music was made in the '80s. Though I could be mistaken, the vintage drum sounds, analog synths, metallic bells and drones, and occasional samples suggest that Jega (a.k.a. Dylan Nathan of Manchester, England) spends many an evening in his bedroom accompanied only by his DX7s, Prophet synths, Roland drum machines, and primitive samplers. [the album was created entirely on a G3 Mac and a Nord Modular - Mike p]

    A former classmate of Richard James (Aphex Twin, Polygon Window) and Mike Paradinas (ยต-ziq, Kid Spatula), Nathan's music reflects either their strong influence or a kindred spirituality with those expert knob twiddlers. He shares their tendency to craft wicked beats with very non-percussion sounds, and to make those beats swing like a battery-powered Clyde Stubblefield. "Rigid Body Dynamics" is the kind of distorted, ring-modulated electro funk that Aphex Twin perfected on his last few albums.

    But if the individual tracks don't necessarily stand out as progeny, the album as a whole establishes Jega's dreamer identity with its fluid coherency and fanciful character. Nathan is also a computer animator, and no doubt some scene was in his mind's eye when he composed this, because each song tends to evoke bizarre imagery. With all of its clangorous metallic bashing, synthesized angelic singing, and the two-step, happy-yet-inhuman beat, "Static" conjures images of an android Santa and his robotic elves making real humans for all the good robot children to play with. The following track, "Angular Momentum," could be the music the robo-elves dance to after work. If this kind of escapism is your thing, get lost in Geometry.

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