- 1080p Collection, a cassette label run out of Vancouver and New York by New Zealander Richard MacFarlane, has quietly snuck out 30 releases since the beginning of 2013. MacFarlane typically feeds off the fringes of dance music, and he has a particular talent for picking out promising newcomers: Edmonton's Khotin, Vancouver's Lnrdcroy and New York's Max McFerren are among those to have their profile boosted with stellar releases. The latest artist to be plucked from obscurity is Boston's Dylan Scheer, AKA Via App, whose desultory brand of techno recalls Actress and Gobby in its stubborn refusal to cohere. But her tendency to insert random, sometimes startling sounds makes her style all her own.
From the point when Lex Luger-style synths start wrapping around the lumpy kick drums of opener "Photogenic," you know you're in for something different. It feels like there are all kinds of ideas and influences hidden in the folds of Scheer's music, layer upon layer of sound that bury some ideas but still leave brief glimpses of others, like the bits of early rave music floating throughout "Photogenic." The garbled sounds running underneath "I Came To Win" are fascinating, if only to try and guess exactly what they might be as a tsunami of distortion crests over the track. Taking the reverse approach, the Gobby collaboration "Greenclaw" takes the New York artist's sound collage style to its structural limits. A murmur of eerie chimes and aquatic sounds, it's achy and fatigued.
There are more conventional club tunes as well. "Healthy" is Scheer's go at deep house (despite its supremely weird bassline), and the comparatively limber "Ace" squeaks by as if it were slathered in motor oil. Even these two don't stay static, however. Scheer's wandering mind takes her tracks down winding paths and, occasionally, creative cul de sacs, exacerbated by the persistent drowsiness of her music. It can go both ways: the dynamism of "Photogenic" and "I Came To Win" is thrilling, but a few other tracks feel soupy and bloated. That's a small quibble to toss at a young artist who seems to take pride in subverting expectations, and Dangerous Game is a promising debut album as it stands.
05. I Came To Win
06. Greenclaw feat. Gobby
07. Lookback Attic
08. Dead Meat
09. Been A Menace
10. Fuq Wav Arena