It's a simple idea—rock-steady drums and winding synth leads—that's executed proficiently. "Shenzhen River" is the best example. Its repeating melody gradually morphs and doubles back on itself, occasionally stretching out and withdrawing like a snake being charmed. On "Tower B," the elastic bass creates tension by almost wrapping around the leaden drums that drive it, but the track's ominous rumblings sound a touch generic. "From The Brink," with a gleaming synth that lights up the dark corners, is roughly the same: utilitarian, melodic techno that'll do the trick without making a big show.
Those three tracks put Ital & Halal's atmospheric ideas in the background, which makes the music more straightforward and less intriguing. On "Shenzhen River," misty pads and noises add texture and depth, but the others are lacking in that department. Ambient closer "Where Exactly I Am" is a welcome respite. Originally commissioned for a gallery installation, the track is an immersive field recording with fragments of speech, underlined by a depressive melody. That chord progression is as slow as a funereal procession but it hits hard, full of feeling where the other tracks are content with functionality.