Sixteen Records: Volume One – album review
Sixteen Records: Volume One
The debut release from Leeds-based label, Sixteen Records: Volume One, is a contemporary soundscape of northern electronica in varied guises. The album brings together indie, funk, jazz, techno and ambient rock inspirations under a sheen of surrealism. Strong female vocals and polished rhythms in a genre-stretching journey, characterise the collection which skilfully captures the subtleties and otherness of synthesised formats.
The album sets off with a trio of subterranean harmonies:
Luna Pines: Spring opens with a longing, haunting vocal drenched in dreamy escapism.
LELO: I Looked At The Sun, brings indie sensibilities in languorous hue.
Hannah Slavin’s U & I builds a wistful, echoed vocal mix and pacey tempo.
Loris singing Bitter, sets the stage with in-utero, arcane effects, for twilight, melodic tones and choral echoes.
Regista, in the chillout lounge for Orange Sky, introduces urban edged beats. Soulful lyrics from Kaya Aline and Amber Joy tinged in earthy realism, blend with an analogue and velvety jazz instrumental undercurrent.
A seamless move leads to Jack Segal’s Touch Me Silver for an optimistically tinged, nostalgic vocal layered over subtly mixed harmonic tones.
Dance track, Sara, sees Dokkodo Sounds building hypnotic, edgy house rhythms with big bass in the ascendant.
Imi: Monolith slows the pace adding soporific vibes and eerie nuances (shades of Kate Bush).
A warbling opening builds to funk dance and word play on Ryan Hawkins catchy, summery Cinnamon, elaborating circuit-bending chords and playful loops.
JOULE lends arthouse mood with tension-building enunciated vocal and subtle electronic instrumental overtones on Unmade Fire.
Eyre Llew’s Havoc bursts forth; edges of danger taking electronica to heraldic metal boundaries. A rock guitar industrial edge contrasts with the purity of the vocal, stilling to understated instrumental piano close.
Coming full circle, magic hour soundtrack – eventually I’ll catch fire, featuring George Gretton & Loris (vocals), meanders abstracted, eighties filmic territory through time warps and soundscape experimentation.
Sixteen Records: Volume One encapsulates fresh purposeful compositions, a sense of starkness at times and chilled, alternate horizons in a collection hallmarked by slick production aesthetics.
Available via Bandcamp
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Read Louder Than War’s interview with Sixteen Records Lablel founder Lotte van den Berg here
All words by Bryony Hegarty. More writing by Bryony can be found at her Louder Than War Author’s Archive