Binh - Mandarine

  • A masterclass in the art of the spooky loop from a producer at his peak.
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  • Can three tracks be magisterial? Listening to Binh's latest EP on his home away from home, Cabaret, I keep returning to this word. These aren't Binh's most memorable tracks, but they're confident in a way that points to an strong grasp of a sound. This is even more striking when we factor in, as a Discogs user notes, the record's improvisational feel. It sounds like dialing into a late night jam session that has been happening for hours. But the feel isn't three shots of peppermint schnapps playing catch-up. It's a soft landing into the mind of a producer at his peak. This is especially true of "Mandarine." The song has a jazziness, if not in content then in form. The rhythm stays steady, while different melodies take turns playing the lead. Some zippy bleeps at the start, a bounced melody and an acid line, before a boozy astronaut grabs the synth and offers us some warbled transmissions from the cosmos. "Rolli Glitzer Kurz" is what we could call the "Halloween techno" that Binh has helped popularize (what Mark Smith hailed as Binh's "demented atmospheres"). Minor chords, a plucked synth, and snares low in the mix give the track an uneasiness akin to whiteknuckled driving through Sleepy Hollow with the headlights dimmed. If "Rolli Glitzer Kurz" is Halloween, "Beeboo" is the morning after. Reverb-laced percussion and lazy chords don't so much as alleviate the anxiety as diffuse it, like spots of light through the Jack-o'-lantern's grin.
  • Tracklist
      A1 Mandarine A2 Rolli Glitzer Kurz B1 Beeboo