Review Summary: Tapage is on the rise.
Let us see: if you are familiar with the music usually associated with the "IDM" tag, there is no description I could use for this album that you have not heard before. Not only that: you probably will not find anything truly unique in Tapage's Overgrown
. But, damn, what a great record this is.
Tijs Ham aka Tapage is a relatively new name in the scene, releasing his first full-length in 2008, The Institute Of Random Events
, and this 2011 Ham is finally graduating from the imaginary IDM College.Of Sound, with his third effort Overgrown
. Tapage was always an advanced student, and his previous works showcased a notorious talent, but somehow he was still not quite there
. This new album, though, fully displays his outstanding command of the aesthetics and inner workings of the IDM style. He borrows a little from seemingly every major figure in the genre, a bit from Bola, a bit from Plaid, a little from Autechre, shades of Gridlock, and then he proceeds to shape every single influence into something certainly not original but definitely cool-sounding. Every thing that can be attractive from glitchy sounds, unusual and abstract soundscapes, oddly structured compositions or irregular rhythms, is effectively condensed in an hour.
What strikes the most is how engaging a recording Overgrown
is. To newcomers this album might seem "out there" at points, but it is above it all a very dynamic and rich listen, full of little surprises and a very interesting sound. It is apparent that Tapage is in his element when creating glitchy soundscapes --all his previous works are testament to this--, but this new record is perhaps his best rounded and more accessible. Constantly shifting and pulsating, filling the air with micro-sounds and strong beats, Overgrown
is arguably the top IDM album of this year.