Rapoon – Calling The Rain 7”ep Black Drone 2013
The relatively new Australian label Black Drone (which has been in operation since 2009), has recently issued a new 7”ep by the long active and very prolific Rapoon. Despite the self professed style of ‘ethno-ambient’, the two untitled tracks presented on each side of the vinyl differ quite significantly, which I guess is consistent with the general diversity found within Rapoon’s works.
Side A of the vinyl delivers a quite ‘song’ focused composition, built on a loose rhythm, hymn like vocal textures and choppy trip hop beats. However due to the upfront mixing of the percussion they do not positively add to the track due to their stilted and simplistic programming, which also takes far too much focus away from the darker undercurrent (…basically to this ear the ‘beats’ sound rather dated).
However the flip side of the vinyl presents a much more pleasing composition. Here the sound is within an experimental dark ambient frame, which ever so slightly flirts with some heavier grinding sound elements. Accordingly various sweeping and low rumbling textures form vague loops which coalesce into a yawning mass of abstract sound. There is a noted ebb and flow in the way the various sound elements interact, but the composition is structured with a general upward trajectory over its 7 minute length, including some unobtrusive and minimalist piano notes played towards the end which brings a melancholic tone to the overall mood.
The overall presentation is positive given Black Drone has pressed this on vinyl with decent thickness and heavy cardboard stock for the full colour cover. Whilst side A is not really to my liking, the side B track more than makes up for this.