Fantastic Mr. Fox returns for his third solo EP on Black Acre records. Following stellar releases from Loops Haunt Ark EP (I cannot recommend this EP enough, it’s like Rustie in a bad mood.) and the endlessly talented Dark Sky's Black Rainbows, one of the most promising talents to emerge in the last couple of years unveils his first substantial work for the label since 2010’s stellar Evelyn EP.
This EP is largely a collaborative effort, as vocalist Alby Daniels is featured on 3 of the 4 tracks here. It makes for an interesting outcome, as artists like Fantastic Mr Fox (e.g: Koreless, James Blake and Mount Kimbie) would often cut up vocals and apply a variety of effects to make them nigh on intelligible whereas here the vocals are given a bit more room.
"Pascal’s Chorus" opens the EP, and rolls along nicely for the 7 minute duration. The same subtle clicks and snaps from earlier works are here in full force with the same wonky keys creating a more house-tempered effort.
"Speak Nuh" is the only track without an Alby Daniels feature, and it turns out to be my personal favourite. It sounds like some kind of Quentin Tarantino stand-off music in its opening section until it finds its feet, hissing snares and xylophone keys all create a pleasant reminder of what Fantastic Mr Fox has produced before as well as a display of evolution and whats to come.
The title track is a bit more of a down-key affair, ambiguous lamenting lyrics and very muted, dim digital synths make for another alluring entry into Fantastic Mr. Fox's catalogue.
The final track "Yesterdays Fall" features the most prominent vocal, and is possibly the most convincing display of "bass music" (I hate the name too) on the fringes of mainstream pop. Catchy melodies and static fuzz meander around the equally catchy vocals. A very welcome innovation, and overall, an EP that was worth the wait.
Stream "Speak Nuh" below: