- Nidam's "obscure techno" evolution continues.
- The recent evolution of Maayan Nidam's sound makes a strong case for artists figuring out what, exactly, it is they want to say. OK, for many producers it'd be unrealistic to take what was essentially a mid-career break, with Nidam not releasing any music for a couple years while she focussed exclusively on studio experimentation. But with the Sea Of Thee LP, released on Perlon in late 2018, she'd hit on a style that seemed to genuinely express something of herself. The basic outline of what she was doing may have been nothing remarkable, but its execution was odd and singular, the result, no doubt, of her new attitude, studio setup and creative choices. Hellium 002, the second release on her new label, is three more examples of this "obscure techno," to borrow her phrase.
My guess is that most people browsing for new releases tend to quickly skip through clips to see if anything catches their ear. If you're considering Hellium 002, try not to—the full effect of these tracks reveals itself gradually. The A-side and the B2 will reward patient listeners who enjoy submitting to loop-based house and techno with heady atmospheres. The distinctive productive style of Sea Of Thee returns, a sense of spaciousness that nonetheless feels enclosed, like standing in a foggy field. There's an appeal in the subtle melodic gestures of those two, but the B1 is the clear standout. Nidam creates a couple of gently triumphant moments: the first when the stunning melody fully uncurls, and the second later on, when the track's incredible lopsided bassline is allowed to lead. Again, soloing these sounds in isolation would reveal nothing special, but their peculiar interactions and the atmosphere that creates feel like they could only have come from this artist at this time.