|Album Review: Elliot Adamson's 'TiHKAL' is a display of intelligent individuality|
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When Elliot Adamson's name first began cropping up a few years ago, it became almost instantaneously obvious that he not only had the prowess, attitude and abilities of an artist far beyond his years, but that he could deliver something different in a genre swamped with same-sounding tracks and repetitive line-ups. Although firmly in the tech-house world in the beginning of his career, it was evident that Elliot had more to offer than your average up and coming DJ.
His continual and relentless development as a producer and creative have been visible in his DJ sets, via his social media and especially on his IDEA imprint, where Elliot last year released two EPs that encapsulated the growth and emitted the direction and vision he was taking with the project.
His latest delivery TiHKAL came today via Soundcloud, with the nine tracks absolutely affirming the statements made above - that Elliot is a mature, emotive and connected creative, producing music which pushes boundaries yet still evokes strong emotions, thoughts and feelings. "I feel really emotional putting this out there. It's an ode to better times, the stories you tell with friends, red wine, white wine and sparkling wines" Elliot explained on his twitter, sharing the project. TiHKAL itself stands for "Things I have known and loved", a sentiment that manifests and resonates throughout the entirety of the album - from the very first listen.
"Langston Hughes" is the transition from warm up to something deeper, the rough vocal teamed with elegant sounding strings set the tone for the level of diversity in sound that follows. "Victory Chop" is an eccentric, disco infused dance-floor weapon, whilst "Six Million Ways To Die" taps into a more emotional experience for the listener. A dark-yet-light bass line holds down the progressive and melancholic theme throughout, with an especially moving few minutes closing out the track.
"Theme For The Weekend" moves back into dark and alluring club energy. It's a hypnotising six-minute trip, before "Donatella" lifts the levels with another funky, disco-drenched journey and "High Drama" comes in the same vein."4-HO-MET at The Met" keeps elements of disco but, much like "I Still Care [Interlude]", is a display of Adamson's risky and abstract side of production. "I Still Care [Interlude]" sounds complicated and simple all at once with an almost UKG feel to the vocal and dreamy, shimmering progression throughout, the only fault with this track is that I wish it were longer. The overarching theme of strings and disco are apparent for a final time on bonus track "Tragic Endeavours", which closes out the album with a vocal that talks of being "here now because it's a learning process" - and that's exactly what it feels like TiHKAL captures.
Elliot Adamson's 'TiHKAL' is out now via IDEA.