Lakker – Monad XIV (2013)
Made up of Ian McDonnell & Dara Smith, Dublin based production outfit Lakker have upped the anti in the last few years, releasing on imprints such as the Killekill, and James Ruskin’s highly acclaimed Blueprint Records. Their latest 12” sees no break in pace either, as the duo provide a four track EP for Stroboscopic Artefacts, making up the fourteenth component of the label’s ‘Monad’ series.
Listening back through Lakker’s previous output, it’s comes as no surprise that they’ve been picked up by the Berlin label – the crossovers in sound between themselves and SA releases are plentiful. This said, the EP does lean as expected, towards the more experimental end of their productions, further developing the pair’s propensity for broken rhythms and celestial melodies.
Thick, hissing static opens first track ‘Dryad’, a component which recurs throughout the release. These are briefly filtered out before being reintroduced alongside a driving, cinematic bass line and punchy, close-knit percussion.
‘Nevada’ creates an off kilter, dub tinged break in pace, before proceeding to Monad XIV’s real highlights; the grating, small hours stomp of ‘Asvattha’, and prophetic closer ‘Artificial Weather’.
Centering around a grating sample reminiscent of a Geiger counter, ‘Asvattha’ slowly works into an evenly paced march, that never quite feels comfortable, despite the introduction of of shuffling hi-hats and toms. Wailing, choral tones make their appearance in the latter half of the track, adding a haunting and detached mood to the track.
Equally atmospheric, ‘Artificial Weather’ makes use of a melancholic chord progression, drawn-out over distorted layers of static and crunchy rhythms. As the track builds to a climax, the cloying atmospheres are suddenly cut, leaving powerful droning chords laid bare…straylandings