Outlines finds like-minded musician/ producers AM and Shawn Lee re-unite for their third full-length outing as – er – AM & Shawn Lee and carry on the sonic journey begun with Celestial Electric and La Musique Numerique. What journey is that then? Well, should one require an outline, let’s just say it’s a mix of organic instrumentation (generally on the rhythm side of things) and synthesizers with a sound that runs the gamut from the sort of funk to the sort of vintage electronica that was the bread and butter of late 60s, 70s and early 80s library music labels with a healthy dose of Brian Wilson-ish psychedelia lobbed in for good measure – an effect not in the least attenuated by falsetto vocals from AM.
So how does everything pan out with this the third crack of the whip? Rather well as it goes. Opener Persuasion is like a funkier Air with hypnotic John Carpenter-ish keys while Cold Tears turns on funky drums and bass and pits rhythm guitar and subtle wah against swirly synth antics. In Moments on the other hand is insistent electronica with a New Wave feel to it, something that is even more overt on Nightshine. And so it goes for the entire LP as the duo alternately plunder their favourite bits of their favourite decades of music and come up with yet more future-retro, soul-pop goodness. Antics which are very much to be encouraged on the basis of this. Players and vid below.
(Out now on digital/ out 10 July on wax/ cd/ cassette HERE)