First a triumphant return to Minus and now the first new 12-inch from Cobblestone Jazz on Wagon Repair in more than a year: is Mathew Jonson singlehandedly bringing minimal back from the brink? This is, of course, a totally ridiculous statement, but it's difficult to see these names and hear these sounds again without wondering if the hyper-detailed sound of Canadian techno might be ripe for a comeback. It's almost too appropriate that the latest jam from Jonson, Tyger Dhula, Danuel Tate and new full-time studio member Colin "The Mole" de la Plante is called "Memories (From Where You Are)," because it's a record very much tuned into the good old days: this group sounds hungry for the kind of quietly epic moment of catharsis that make so many of their early records unforgettable. Unfortunately, on this jam, they fall somewhat short of recapturing the magic, never quite finding that glorious thread that runs through so much of their music.
Which isn't to say "Memories," an extended jam presented here as two longish edits stitched together by the Mole, isn't an engaging record at times, especially when pumped through a good pair of headphones. Part 1 finds a smoky Rhodes and loping keyboards sizzling over slowly cooking synth bass—never doubt the power of glacial filter modulation—with dashes of a funk sample not quite gluing everything together. Part 2 makes very few changes from the first mix, though the arrangement is slightly streamlined and thus a touch more muscular. "Memories" features undoubtedly tight playing, but Cobblestone Jazz sound like they're treading water, uncertain about their next step. It's not a bad record, but it never quite arrives.
Buy Cobblestone Jazz - Memories (From Where You Are) at
Tracklist: Cobblestone Jazz - Memories (From Where You Are) A Memories (From Where You Are) (Part 1)
B Memories (From Where You Are) (Part 2)