Iglooghost
Clear Tamei


4.0
excellent

Review

by Simon CONTRIBUTOR (232 Reviews)
August 11th, 2018 | 24 replies


Release Date: 2018 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A cute idea with great results.

The marketing and approach to writing music can be just as immersive and interesting as listening to the music itself. In the case of Iglooghost, he’s clearly an artist who writes music to transcend the conventions of just listening to an album, adding substance and layers to the outside of his tracks for fans to delve deeper if they wish to do so. His music is ostensibly narrative driven, having whole storylines made up to coincide with his compositions, and it’s a novelty I’m a sucker for. While Clear Tamei is an EP, it’s one half to a broader picture, and in this review, I’ll talk about both halves of the project to give a more comprehensive impression of the release. This follow-up venture is a prequel to Iglooghost’s well-regarded debut album, Neō Wax Bloom, setting up the EPs with this synopsis:

“The double features are set in Mamu, 3000 years prior to the events of ‘Neō Wax Bloom.’ We are introduced to a young, see-through, god in-training named Tamei. Although a gifted, he and his little cohorts resent their fate of becoming Grid Göds - and find themselves wound up in a hyperspeed, cross-temporal battle with a fleet of mysterious, round beings.”

This lays the groundwork for a juxtaposition of EPs – each side offering a different experience that highlights the breadth of Igloo’s abilities as a musician.

Clear Tamei

As is evident from the cover art for these works, Clear Tamei has an embrace of light and positivity, while Steel Mogu represents itself as the darker segment of the tale. When physically listening to them, it’s apparent the artwork represents a yin-yang effect. This is a beautifully vivid chapter, containing lush, grandiose soundscapes and vibrant orchestration instruments intermingled with abrasive electronics. It’s a sound best described as a glitched out Katamari soundtrack with a touch of bipolar. But the overall aesthetic leans towards an organic, rural vibe: the tweeting birds on the opening to “Påleo Mamu” and the high-pitched electronics that harmonise with the tranquil ambience; the warm cello that creates a cathartic dissonance to “New Vectors” scratchy electronics; and the sporadic string section and watery effects spread across “Clear Tamei” secure a consistent tone throughout the EP. But the biggest surprise comes from how these organic elements work so well with the brazened sub-bass and its crazy rhythms that stamp all over the delicate ideas based at the core of this thing. Its eccentric demeanour and imaginative songwriting results in a swift, thoroughly entertaining listen from front to back.

Steel Mogu

The darker side of the coin is Steel Mogu. Though it keeps one eye on the rural vibe Clear Tamei sticks with, it’s less of a focal point here, offering a slightly more overt IDM offering with a flurry of abrasive synths, cricket-y trance elements and intense sample work that uses all manner of sounds to daze the listener. It’s more dynamic than Clear Tamei, with the vegetated vibes being swallowed up by weighty trip-hop and hip-hop influences – hell, there’s even lashings of dub-step found on the likes of “Mei Mode” that ensure you’ll never get bored going through this journey. Steel Mogu boarders on schizophrenic at times with the likes of “Niteracer” and its fat breakdowns, hyper-tempo rap samples and dense electronic textures, but it's also the more sombre offering of the two; a looming sadness that hangs over the waves of trance and merciless beats with subtle lashings of soft synth swells that scuttle around the back and over songs. I’m not entirely sure which way these EPs were supposed to be heard, but listening to this one last ended with a satisfying resolve to the entire project.

United We’re Strong

As a collective, listening to this thing in its entirety was simply a joy to sit through. A bold idea on Igloo’s part to release a brace of EPs simultaneously, but it was clearly a vision before development than a fleeting afterthought. These things were designed to be listened to separately, but offer an altogether different experience if you hear them back-to-back. Clear Tamei was a slightly more enjoyable listen for me, but the great thing about this is it caters to a broad audience, with each EP offering a number of styles for fans to enjoy and neither one hindering the other. It’s an all-round excellent offering with several ways in which to enjoy it, welcoming repeated listens as a result.

EXCELLENT.

FORMAT//EDITIONS: DIGITAL

PACKAGING: N/A

SPECIAL EDITION: N/A

ALBUM STREAM//PURCHASE: https://iglooghost.bandcamp.com/album/clear-tamei
https://iglooghost.bandcamp.com/album/steel-mogu



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Comments:Add a Comment 
bgillesp
August 11th 2018


6597 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Is one order better than another to check these two?

Digging: Grateful Dead - Anthem of the Sun

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
August 11th 2018


15088 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I've tried it both ways and I prefer clear tamei then steel mogu, but knowing my mentality he probably intended it to be the other way round lol

Digging: HEALTH - VOL. 4 :: SLAVES OF FEAR

SowingSeason
Moderator
August 11th 2018


29589 Comments


Not sure why but I love the cover art for this.

Nice review!

Digging: Copeland - Blushing

rabidfish
August 11th 2018


4785 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

yea the art for all these is def the only interesting thing about it.

the music here (and the other EP too) hasn't evolved at all, still the same shallow mess that was neo wax bloom.

Digging: Blizzi Boi - Europa

Tunaboy45
August 11th 2018


16702 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review as always, surprised it didn't have a review already it's pretty great

PostMesmeric
August 11th 2018


743 Comments


I think Clear Tamei is superior to Steel Mogu too, Simon. Great review!

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
August 11th 2018


15088 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks for the love guys, appreciated.



Yeah the artwork is great, I think he's heavily influenced by the katamari games; both musically and visually

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
August 11th 2018


16070 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

this cat is real good. I just dunno how else to describe these noises he's always coming up with

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
August 11th 2018


15088 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah some of it is pretty out there lol

rabidfish
August 11th 2018


4785 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

bruh don't even mention Katamari and this on the same sentence.





UGH.

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
August 11th 2018


15088 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You can tell he's influenced by it though... just look at that artwork to neo wax

rabidfish
August 11th 2018


4785 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

yea, art work, maybe, but musically i just don't see a connection... maybe because Katamari Damacy has some of the best videogame soundtracks of all time and this is well... not good.

Trebor.
Staff Reviewer
August 11th 2018


56353 Comments


wag

jmh886
August 17th 2018


2243 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

i wish more electronic music was like this kid.

Tunaboy45
August 17th 2018


16702 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

New Vectors is one of the best songs I've heard this year

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
August 23rd 2018


24331 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

i like clear tamei a bit more but both are delishhhhh

DrGonzo1937
Contributing Reviewer
August 23rd 2018


15088 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, I think the consensus is Clear Tamei jams harder

TundraL5Z
August 26th 2018


2290 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This shit is fucking weird... (imo)

Digging: Swallow the Sun - When A Shadow Is Forced Into The Light

Relinquished
August 26th 2018


39071 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

get weird with it

Ninjahague
August 30th 2018


1057 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

groovy



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