Metrist - Pollen Pt. 1

  • An intricate blend of bass and techno on Batu's label.
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  • Metrist's first record for Timedance, released in 2015 under the one-off L.Sae alias, is up there with the label's strangest. Its winding structures and hissing production contrasts with the label's current glinting aesthetic, and while Timedance is known for making potentially risky ideas into notable floor-fillers, Metrist's effort was ambitious enough to leave some commentators on the fence. 2015 now feels like an age away, though, and Metrist's abilities and tastes have only sharpened, so much so that label boss Batu deemed his new productions worthy of a trilogy of 12-inches. The first instalment, Pollen Pt. 1, is just as weird as the L.Sae EP, though it more satisfyingly hits the balance between what-the-hell-is-happening sound design and dance floor pay off. The new EP is simply a better Trojan horse, as Metrist sneaks inventive production into a functional context while expanding his voice as a producer. The sandpaper-dry snare in "OL Face You Got" pulls scatterbrain vocal manipulations and seasick effects into a funky lurch that's much more inviting than the track's otherwise petulant tendencies suggest. The simple inclusion of swing and a regular kick in "OB Lopes" immediately gives Metrist's everything-but-the-kitchen-sink approach a sturdy base from which to build. While the track acts more as a testing ground for sonic experimentation than supplying a narrative, the regular—albeit polyrhythmic—rhythms guide the listener to follow the subtleties of the sounds. It's a simple but important point, given how crucial the little details are to Metrist's character as a producer. Across the EP, production pyrotechnics are the star of the show. But elaborate and brain-tickling as they are, they're an ever-present component of the music, which makes it difficult to keep things fresh. Luckily, Metrist finds ways to maintain the wow factor. "Closer The TV," which uses voices as a main sound source, is a good example, deploying a relatable, human element to help the listener tune into how the sounds transform, even as they're subjected to inhuman, impossible-sounding manipulation. It fits in nicely with other downtempo crawlers on Timedance, trudging along in a sort of no man's land, but it's also the sort of tune that'd spring quickly to mind after a long night of music.
  • Tracklist
      A1 OL Face You Got A2 Qaqq Ata B1 OB Lopes B2 Closer The TV