Release Date: 13th October 2017
Ltd Edition 12” Vinyl & Download
Astrophonica welcomes Lewis James to the fold with the Shapeshifter EP. A professional sound designer and life long musician, London-based Lewis James first appeared on the label via the Gradients compilation in early 2017. With this EP he celebrates his love of jungle and drum & bass across four tracks that combine analogue and digital processes to create what he calls, "a spaced out identity, somewhere between science fiction and the dancefloor."
The title track opens with a wide, cinematic and laid back feel -- floating arpeggios, processed guitars and bowed viol, effected vocals -- before living up to its name with a subtle switch towards tougher, rhythm driven movement. "Ferro" picks up the action further with an homage to the classic drum & bass formula of combining starkly different moods between the intro and the core of the track. Here it all begins with a bright, lush opening, a gradual walk into the light before descending into the pits of a smoky, 3am dancefloor with punchy breaks and a call and response between rubbery bass and grinding synth lines. Come back up for breath halfway through and then dive in again.
On the B side, "Your Love Is A Power" aims for the sweet spot between classic jungle rinse out and catchy, ear-worm pop. Built around a beautiful vocal performance from Dan Dans K, the track marries the energy of jungle -- the simplicity of an amen smashed over a reece bass -- with the emotional power of a top 40 pop song. It's simple but highly effective. The EP closes on a high note with "Turbo", a punishing beatdown of 808 drums and acid melodies with enough switches to keep the most adventurous of listeners of their toes.
With the Shapeshifter EP, Astrophonica continues its exploration of cosmic electronic music. All four tracks display the evident love Lewis James has for the possibilities offered by the 160-170 tempo alongside a fascinating attention to detail and an ear for brilliant, cinematic moments.
Written & Produced by Lewis James.
Vocals on Your Love Is a Power by Danielle Kranendonk.
Artwork by Utile Creative.
Mastered by Robert Macciocchi at SC Mastering.
Vinyl Mastering & Cut by Lewis Hopkin at Star Delta.
b1. Your Love Is A Power (Ft. DanDansK)