When Tom asked me awhile back if I’d be interested in writing for Infinite State Machine I immediately said yes. I have always wanted to be involved in a rebirth and ISM has been, over the years, one of my top sources for music and producers other people weren’t hyping or playing. So, obviously, if you have a problem with anything I do at any point, just blame Tom.
First up from me is the Golden Donna/Lake Daggers split that came out in May of this year on the Sacred Phrases label as a digital/cassette release that flew under the radar. While there are strong tracks on this release from both artists, the cut that I keep coming back to is Golden Donna’s, I Still See You.
I Still See You is a confidently understated track that caught my attention with an absolutely beautiful melody line that builds over the course of the track. As will likely become apparent over time, I am a sucker for a good melody. It’s an ideal track for early on in a night or mix with both ambient/experimental textures that transition and play off a more straight ahead house sound. I Still See You is patient in development. Joel Shanahan allows for things to grow without being rushed. Each part gently shifts and transforms into new sounds and directions over five minutes. The track features a thin and then buzzing synth intro, flourishes of sweeping and pulsating electronic tones throughout, a beautifully lush string section, as well as a funked out synth on the finish replete with a plucked bass line. It is a track that checks off a number of boxes without being contrived. The drum programming is pleasingly loose and shuffling and does support work for all the instruments showcased. Nothing in the mix is too tight or locked down. Melody and rhythm are allowed plenty of room to have a life of their own.
Sacred Phrases has been releasing some really great work quietly here in the Midwest and it’s a label I’m hopeful people start picking up on and paying attention to.
Musician, visual artist and ardent homosexual. Follow me on twitter @basilionichols.