- In some hands the extended EP format can feel like an uneasy middle-ground between EP and album. But as we saw with last year's Hall Of Human Origins EP and the shapeshifting 15-minute title track on the Sly Gazebo EP, Archie Pelago's sound thrives when afforded a wide vista. The classically trained Brooklyn trio's approach, which stikes a tricky balance between brass, strings and electronics, has been more assured with each release, and on Lakeside Obelisk they've again pulled it off in generally impressive fashion.
The title track plays the risk-reward game particularly well, tempering hyperactive percussion with a gorgeously austere cello and clip-clopping woodwind. "Neighborhood Mephisto" is double the length of anything else here, and has an episodic feel, allowing its strings to emerge gradually from—and periodically engulf—a 160 BPM hail of toms and synths. "D's Diamonds" and "Chilly" foreground their acoustic and electronic components respectively, and are enjoyable enough if not beguiling in quite the same way. The former's trumpet line and twinkling chimes dominate as a bass synth wheezes gently in the background, while the latter pairs jittery drums with contrasting layers of synth. "Saturn V" makes for a grandiose, on-point closer, its sumptuous, lethargic strings and punchy beats joined by a dreamy female vocal that at times could almost be the sound of a violin.
A1 D's Diamonds
A3 Lakeside Obelisk
B1 Neighborhood Mephisto
B2 Saturn V