EU, Warm Math [Pause_2 Recordings - PAUSE008, 2002]
This EU release on the Pause_2 imprint is a full-length album entitled “Warm Math”. The album contains twelve tracks of down tempo hip hop influenced beats, carefully constructed melodies and slight retro feelings. Not necessarily a bad thing and there’re plenty of examples of that on the album. For example the opening “Retro” [sic!] with hip hop beats and gently sounding melody, the second track “Gerp” with more complex beats, but the same gently played melody. It is followed by “Rilly” that has obvious house influences and it’s a soothing piece of music. “Said” contains a steady beat alongside a large variety of retro sounding melodies and “Salva” develops along the same lines. But at times the retro inspiration in sound choice and use and lightness of the compositions get overwhelming and the overall effect is somewhat negative, because they give the tracks in question pure pop characteristics. For example the aptly named “Chorus” with its simple beats, suggestion of manipulated vocals and synth washes or “Puerto” that has a compelling down tempo rhythmic structure, but is drenched in synth extravaganza. “Sm” is reminiscent of “Rilly” in its house influences but is an even lighter composition. “JJ3″ is decidly retro sounding reminiscent of the classic B12 school of thought, but it has a body and adds some weight to the album. “Secret Track” is not all that secret, but it is a gentle down tempo number with some nice micro tempo changes. “North” follows along the same path, but decreases the tempo a little further and contains obvious references. Last two tracks “Eusday” and “Gerpient” concludes the album. Nevertheless EU got a unique sound and they are obviously highly skilled artists. “Warm Math” is not as strong as their mini album “Reframing” previously released on Pause_2 Recordings. However this offering is well balanced and works as an album. Is it a new destination for EU or is it simply a small musical detour? Time will tell and whatever the outcome, it will be interesting.