Burial
Truant/Rough Sleeper


4.0
excellent

Review

by fish CONTRIBUTOR (43 Reviews)
February 17th, 2013 | 116 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Burial goes full circle

It’s hard not to view Burial’s three solo EPs stretching back to 2011 as a trilogy. Each one provides a slice of Burial’s progression from the relative simplicity of Untrue, in a Goldilocks style progression. Street Halo kept a focus on pop melodies but experimented with slightly longer song structures and a more absorbing atmosphere. Kindred was even more expansive and complex, winding through progressive passages of music deeper than anything Burial had done before. Cut-outs were a major theme, with different segments of music strung together within individual tracks. On Truant this technique has been upped another notch. Whereas on Kindred the tracks still came across as solid pieces of music, on Truant the tracks fragment, barely linking together the collection of often unrelated ideas within them.

It’d be easy to say that Burial has overstepped the mark this time, but Truant sees him almost going full circle and back to his roots. Although the two blocks of sound cut into slices of twelve and fourteen minutes seem even more daunting and grandiose than Kindred, they are mainly a collected variety of simple ideas. Light synthesised strings and crackling provide the fabric for Burial’s palette of motifs- a voice calling out “Truant” in melisma, vocal samples singing shreds of vague lyrics begging for interpretation, growling bass-lines, flickering beats, sirens, a motif struck out of an instrument sounding suspiciously like a xylophone and a noise resembling the sound of helicopter propellers, although numbed and suffocated. Their isolation and ambiguity creates an atmosphere in itself, in counterpart to Kindred’s thick vibe. Often the tightly coiled beats and rumbling bass-lines acting are reminiscent of Burial’s early work, stretching back to the beat driven South London Boroughs. Although they sound more weary and aged, adding to the music’s atmosphere.

As a whole, Truant may not be Burial’s best work to date- it’s not as catchy as Untrue or as immersive and atmospheric as Kindred (which is arguably where he struck the perfect balance in his sound)- but it provides a fascinating perspective on his musical progression. Truant uses the longer song structure to showcase various scraps of musical ideas that work based on their simplicity and the basic relations they form interlocked with another idea. Yet, from the moment in “Rough Sleeper” where a burst of sirens immediately precedes a brief flurry from the beats and vocals, to the manic combination of dissonant sirens and the beat towards the end of “Truant”, to the softer and more atmospheric segments, the unpredictable nature of these sounds from one to the other manages to make the EP a deep and exciting listen which allows for multiple listens to make sense of.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
fish.
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


22014 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This still didn't have a review

Digging: Freddie Gibbs and Madlib - Pinata

MadKungFu
February 16th 2013


375 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

didn't it?

fish.
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


22014 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

an actual review

mindleviticus
February 16th 2013


8293 Comments


The last one was an "actual" review, it was just more creative than this one

....Good review, though.

oltnabrick
February 16th 2013


31112 Comments


Negd, not as creative




lol

fish.
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


22014 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yeah

no

it was good

but no

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


21473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Burial provides an interesting perspective on his sound by turning it on its head"

Not sure how this shows Burial 'turning his sound on its head' considering its pretty basic compared to his other stuff

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fish.
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


22014 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

That's the point

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


21473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Doesnt really make sense but ok

oltnabrick
February 16th 2013


31112 Comments


it does make sense lol

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


21473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Oh do explain, please

oltnabrick
February 16th 2013


31112 Comments


ok


Fish is saying that Burial is changing his sound around

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
February 16th 2013


21473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Basically proved my point. See turning something on its head is like turning it upside down, as in a drastic 180 degree change yet thats pretty much the opposite of whats going on here since again this is basic compared to his other stuff

Gyromania
February 17th 2013


15941 Comments


yeah, basically what insurrection was saying.

there are some really sloppy sentences here:

Each ones provides a slice into Burial’s progression from the relative simplicity of Untrue


one*

a slice into burial's progression? 'of' maybe?

try saying 'relatively simple untrue'. also, untrue simple? how do you figure?

on Truant the tracks fragment


fragmented* and put a comma after truant.



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robertsona
Staff Reviewer
February 17th 2013


15052 Comments


"See turning something on its head is like turning it upside down, as in a drastic 180 degree change yet thats pretty much the opposite of whats going on here since again this is basic compared to his other stuff"

im not sure i agree with the idea that this record is turning burial's sound on its head but regardless the "basic" nature of a sound does not negate that it might signal a progression or a subversion of previous ideals/sounds so ?_?

Insurrection
Contributing Reviewer
February 17th 2013


21473 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Well progression is one thing but a complete 180 change is another

Gyromania
February 17th 2013


15941 Comments


it's definitely not turning burial's sound on its head, that would imply that his sound has changed completely, which it hasn't.

zxlkho
February 17th 2013


3465 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

it's better than a 4

MichaelSnoxall
February 17th 2013


12163 Comments


Nah, Truant isn't that good and Rough Sleeper is amazing, but because Rough Sleeper only takes up half the run time, it adds up to about 4.


Truant 3.5/5
Rough Sleeper 5/5


overall rating 4/5

MichaelSnoxall
February 17th 2013


12163 Comments


Keep in mind Truant's like a 3.3 and Rough Sleeper's like a 4.8



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