- A breakout artist delivers a hazy journey though UK club sounds, though not like you've heard before.
- Loraine James brings in the new decade with New Year's Substitution 2, an eight-track EP of collaborations produced in seven days "with some friends" and available to buy on Bandcamp for as much or as little as you want. James was relatively unheard-of when she made New Year's Substitution at the end of 2015. By contrast, she starts 2020 as an established artist, fresh from the release of For You And I, one of RA's top albums of 2019.
On this EP, as on her previous record, James's music seems to borrow from various strains of UK dance music, though isn't fully immersed in any of them. On "I'm Feeling," James's moody chords and glitchy vocals are layered over messy breaks. Dubstep, which was a constant but understated presence on For You And I, is more directly referenced here, particularly on "Ripples Of Light" and "Take It Easy," two of the EP's best moments.
The impressive list of collaborators here is a reflection of how good last year was for James. The Sicilian experimentalist Shapednoise features on "Chapter 0," an intense barrage of kicks and stabs with a Justin Timberlake vocal. patten, a British producer who also chops up and reimagines UK dance music, features on "LJP1," a banger that nods to Technotronic's "Pump Up The Jam."
Despite being so varied and featuring eight other producers, James's own voice stands out. Whether through the finely spliced vocals or the mellow harmonics, this EP is a reminder of how different her music sounds from a lot of her contemporaries. For something so low-key and hastily put together, New Year's Substitution 2 feels pretty essential.
01. New Year New Meh feat. J Albert
02. Ripples Of Light feat. Lighght
03. Chapter 0 feat. Shapednoise
04. I'm Feeling feat. Morwell
05. I- feat. zwansøund
06. Ramble In The Jungle feat. Matt Wrafter
07. LJP1 feat. patten
08. Take It Easy feat. Florian T M Zeisig