• Kid Spatula - Meast

    Kid Spatula - Meast

    Kid Spatula earned rave reviews for his debut album, ‘Full Sunken Beats’, yet ‘Meast’ takes Mike Paradina’s creation up another notch still. Some might say it sounds a bit like U-Ziq, until you realise it’s the same prolific creator. It also sounds like a hybrid of Aphex Twin, Squarepusher and Yazoo. Creative ambient backdrops, hypnotizingly addictive eighties-style synth melodies and large dollops of frenzied, sampled machine hacking. It’s all here, spread amongst two discs and gargantuan 34 tracks, although it has to be said that ‘Meast’ is in fact archive material from his various 94-98 projects, so not new material as such. However, Paradina’s contemporary edge ensures you won’t notice that ‘brand new’ factor in the slightest.

    The album kicks off with the hilarious ‘Housewife’, where cheesy analogue knob twiddling blends intuitively with tongue-in-cheek speech samples of a board housewife looking for some extra-marital adventure. The album continues to provide gloriously melodic electronica until ‘Further 2’, whereupon it takes a dark, Boards Of Canada-style, off-key twist. ‘Tugboat’ follows, a brilliant track that simply demands repeat plays for its addictive break-beats, ethereal soundscapes and orgasmic melodic signatures, let me tell you, this is up there with the best of them. Meanwhile, ‘Local Jogger’ is pure Aphex at his playful best, ‘Residue’ tackles Atari computer game-style firepower, then its back to the BOC-style ‘Carrier’. Brilliantly weird. Okay, I’m making a lot of comparisons here, but this isn’t plaigarism, it’s taking people on at their own game and kicking backsides. This is the first electronic album of 2004 to stake a case for album of the year, it’s really that good.

    However, lest not forget that was just Disc One, which at over 70 minutes length has hardly a single duff track on it. Disc Two on the other hand is a slightly different kettle of fish, more rhythmic, atmospheric and a little darker, but not at the expense of melody. More of a bleep-fest really, set to tribal rhythms and beats. It makes for quality background listening, but has more dips than its neighbour, despite a fair few standout tracks. Whichever way you look at it, this is Paradinas most enjoyable album to date, primed to be a classic.

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