Over the course of four years, Bristol's Immerse Records has gradually gathered together a respectable roster of artists who have done an impressive job of blurring the boundaries of moody dubstep and glitch. And while he perhaps not be the label's most high-profile artist, Finland's Late, AKA Lauri Ampuja, has come up with one of the imprint's standout releases to date.
The key to the Phantom Papers double pack is, most obviously, the quality of the sound design, blending micro sounds and detailed percussive sculptures with lush tapestries of wistful melodies. Ampuja's method is to base each track around a single vocal line which is then teased, fractured, slowed, isolated or fused with the micro melodies, giving it multiple and changing interpretations. The title track is the most rhythmically complicated, slowly building off-beat percussion over a mournfully slow kick drum until the breakdown where a child's voice hesitates, recalling lost memories. In contrast, the vocals in "Under These Conditions" are more abstracted, forming the shimmering backdrop to the more straightforward beats, until the turbulence of the detonating percussion throws up a more intelligible phrase. "Losing You" is distinctly in the vein of Burial, but much smoother sonically and rhythmically. "Bittersweet," meanwhile, is the finest track. Opening in dramatic fashion, it slowly descends through a spiral of mental anguish while maintaining an urgent dance floor pressure.
Buy Late - Phantom Papers at
Tracklist: Late - Phantom Papers A1 Losing you
A2 Under These Conditions
B1 Phantom Papers