Traditionally, electronic music is composed entirely in a digital environment, permanently residing in the uncanny valley, unrooted in the physical world. This causes many to perceive electronic music as cold, academic, unrelatable - either empty DJ fodder, or sounding like someone hacking off on a video game; technically impressive, but without much to say.
There is another way, however, when real-world sounds come together with the limitless potential for audio mangling and manipulation of digital production. Got The Goings Off Coming On from Un Deux Abattoir who is multi-instrumentalist David Gould, a British lad currently residing in Amsterdam, takes you on a journey from dark beaches at night, to strobing dance floors, to a dimly lit jazz-club, by incorporating field recordings, exquisite electronic productions and exploring numerous genres along the way.
When I read Un Deux Abattoir was a classically trained guitarist, I steeled myself for another prog instrumental technical exercise - strong on talent, but short on individuality or strong songwriting. I couldn't have been more off the mark. Got The Goings Off Coming On starts off with the sound of breaking waves and the dripping sonority of a clanking buoy on "Wet Turtles Have No Thirst," letting us know straight off the bat that this is no ordinary instrumental album. Un Deux Abattoir is taking us on a journey. That journey takes a sharp left turn, almost immediately, as a hockey rink organ creeps in, only to morph into a swooning, crooning airy arty singer/songwriter, over a futuristic bedrock of beats and crawling bass, that sounds like David Sylvain, in his Japan days, getting together with Flying Lotus.
The mood is set, the spell is cast, for a penultimate nocturnal listen, as styles and sounds slowly blend and swirl, imperceptibly shuffling from one genre to another, from darkside downbeat ("Mmmm?"), with a hint of classic Bristolian dub-worship, to straight-up jazz, served chilled in Freon, on "Get The Goings Off Coming On"), with the slickest double bass this side of a Massive Attack record.
What speaks most tellingly about David Gould is that he is very, very good at every genre he works in. Got The Goings Off Coming On has the alien exotica otherworldly charm of the contemporary beat scene, while the jazz trappings are smooth, slick, soulful, grooving and swinging in all the right ways.
I have no complaints or criticisms of Got The Goings Off Coming On, other than it being too short, at a slight five tracks. I could get lost in these sounds for twice as long. If you've ever wanted an opportunity to check out what is possible with electronic production, but haven't known where to begin, this would be a damn good introduction. There's something for every lover of instrumental music, here, as well as those who want their inner world exploded with unknown visions of unearthly pleasures, terrors and mysteries.
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