Worldly Other

Exclaim! - - REVIEWS - KYLE MULLIN DARYL KEAT­ING KAITLIN RUETHER

ELEC­TRONIC

Iglooghost

Clear Tamei / Steel Mogu

Iglooghost (aka Sea­mus Mal­liagh) has been turn­ing heads and con­fus­ing ear­buds with his mu­tant brand of hip-hop beats, pop-laced IDM and high-pitched vo­cals, all vi­o­lently skewed through a kalei­do­scopic lens. In 2015, Chi­nese Nü Yr marked a turn­ing point in the young British pro­ducer’s ca­reer (he was only 18), as his first re­lease on Fly­ing Lo­tus’s Brain­feeder la­bel. In­stead of a FlyLo-backed al­bum, Mal­liagh has jet­ti­soned the Brain­feeder fam­ily and given us a dou­ble EP in lieu of a full record.

Ev­ery Iglooghost re­lease has its own nar­ra­tive — too com­pli­cated to get into — cen­tred around gelati­nous worm-shaped creatures, a misty planet called Mamu, melon-coloured ba­bies and laser bat­tles. Whether or not these sto­ries ac­tu­ally re­late to the mu­sic in any real way is to be de­ter­mined, but the of­fer­ings on this most re­cent ce­les­tial al­tar are su­perb from start to fin­ish. Clear Tamei is plugged as the more melan­cholic of the two, but don’t let that fool you: it’s still a hail­storm of sonic crayons, al­beit with some or­ches­tral swaths thrown in. “Namā” shines through as Clear Tamei’s high­light, with soft xy­lo­phonic noises, quick gui­tar-sound­ing so­los, and a firm dose of sub­sonic pum­melling.

As you move on to Steel Mogu, the pro­ceed­ings only get more bom­bas­tic. “Black Light Ul­tra” sounds like a

aplomb. (Net­twerk) FOLK ROCK rogue choir fever­ishly ham­mer­ing a sam­pler, while “Mei Mode” and “Nit­er­acer” come off like songs from the sound­track of a seizure-in­duc­ing anime. We’re un­der no il­lu­sions here — this mu­sic is ridicu­lous — but we’ll be damned if it isn’t one of the most in­ter­est­ing things out there at the mo­ment. (In­de­pen­dent)

Do the sto­ries ac­tu­ally re­late to tracks or are they just a fan­tas­ti­cal back­drop?

All the songs are about the sto­ries, but I want peo­ple to make up their own if they’ve got bet­ter ideas. I think it’s sick to have a lit­tle prompt, but I ob­vi­ously want peo­ple to be able to fuck with this stuff, even if they don’t know about these dumb back­sto­ries. I know ex­actly what ev­ery sec­ond of each song is about, but I think it’s more fun to only give peo­ple a tiny glimpse.

You’ve used your lit­tle sis­ter’s and your dad’s vo­cals on tracks. Any­thing like that for this new record?

I made my girl­friend learn a made-up lan­guage and scream loads of raps in it in a Lil Pump ca­dence, which is hid­den on loads of the tracks. I re­ally like get­ting peo­ple to record stuff where they don’t fully get what it is they have to do, and sort of go in hes­i­tantly. I al­ways like the naivety that comes from those sorts of record­ings. That shit feels re­ally cool and non-con­trived.

frenzy of cre­ation in the songs. Ma­jor Love wield en­ergy with an elec­tric bite: melodies twist catchy and Brown’s pophappy voice swoops into psy­che­delic un­der­tones. “I was so much older then / I am younger now,” is an evoca­tive line that re­calls Bob Dy­lan’s “My Back Pages” on “Older Younger.” “So Good” gleams with “I can’t re­mem­ber a time I felt so good.” The en­ergy falls a lit­tle as the al­bum pro­gresses; it’s dif­fi­cult to main­tain such a high level of op­ti­mism. “I Can’t Wrap My Heart Around It” plays in a bluesy range with shifts in the dy­nam­ics, and the slower “I Love All of You” has the re­peat­ing re­frain “I love you / I love all of you” with float­ing vo­cals and a com­posed mood. The crux of the shift seems to lay with the sweet and moody “Moth­er­land” — an ode to Al­berta that fea­tures the pedal steel tal­ents of Aaron Gold­stein. With a bass thrum size to it, the song re­con­nects to the idea of Colleen Brown and Scenic Route to Alaska’s for­tu­nate meet­ing. Ma­jor Love have man­aged to pro­pel the joy of find­ing — and con­nect­ing with — other Cana­di­ans abroad, and have turned it into a sound­track for rev­elry. (La­tent Record­ings) HARD­CORE PUNK

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