Iglooghost
Tidal Memory Exo


3.8
excellent

Review

by Ben STAFF
May 14th, 2024 | 41 replies


Release Date: 05/10/2024 | Tracklist

Review Summary: signal : calcite : drifter : ripple

It’s probably the goofed-up way the human brain processes information - expectation fuelling reality etc. - but goddamn I am a sucker for dope album art. Good packaging’s ability to inform and enrich the experience provided by the music contained within is, itself, good. As a post-it note of thematic intent, it facilitates storytelling through a discog, as well as demarcation against others within the scene/genre: this is what I am; this is what I’m not.

In this respect, Igloo has been exemplary. That endearing globular-chrome wizard emblem is Seamus, refracting the mirror glaze plus chocolate sprinkles that constitute his chaotic, ADHD-inducing sound. Likewise, when the formula has shifted elsewhere, deviating from the Wonky/Glitchy lane of UK Bass that this spooky boi is known for, his album art has adapted accordingly - see, for example, the minimalist-adjacent snoozebient of 2016’s Snoring, portrayed with a visage of dozy cuteness, as well as the Ying-Yang dichotomy of Steel Mogu and Clear Tamei. As you’d expect, then, the nautical/industrial surrealism adorning Tidal Memory Exo is no different.

The Irish electrosmith’s twenty-twenty-four outing sways. Hiphopian phrasing bubbles out, pulse-like, punctuating the hypnotic ebb-flow of seaweed tugged by a mechanical tide: chrome: rust: mimic: shred. Patient, nondescript tempos set the stage, leaving more space for weighty intention within the songcraft than the 99,999BPM stylings of a Neo Wax Bloom ever allowed for. I adore that album’s capacity for ecstasy via overload, but the simple melody+rhythm presented here is a refreshing contrast, offering the quiet pleasure of thump and thrum. It feels less giddy and flamboyant, but a lot sturdier, its grooves firmly established, in place of those cartoonish rapid-fire bait-and-switches. You get actual, tangible build and release. You also get confident splashes of trip hop and grime, harkening back to the 2015 Mr. Yote collab, MILK EMPIRE, but without quite so much juvenile jank. ‘Subtle’ would be the wrong word - the seaside vistas here still blitz ballz when they feel like it (“Alloy Flea”), packing enough bass to conjure a woof (“Coral Mimic”) - but ‘breathy’, ‘saline’ and ‘thoughtful’ ought to do the trick.

Bathed in gray and gold, it feels like a more mature, more realised thing. There’s a shape and a presence and a soul, here, life coaxed from circuitry, ghost in machine revealed to be flesh and bone and sand. and the production is gushing. It’s about as dynamic and thicc as Igloo has gone. A clean, pliant, plastic timbre works well when there’s a million and one things to keep track of (a la Neo Wax Bloom) but the less cluttered presentation here - one of barnacles and barbed wire and fishies - certainly benefits from the more textured finish. Wonderfully cohesive, too, as a result, the whole moist metallic enterprise held in place with the aforementioned, ever present, near spoken-word cadence: silo: trident: umbra: tear out.

Personally, I still prefer the liquorice whip cacophony of Igloo’s messier works - their goofy breakneck angularity and distraction via a million things just works for me - but, tbh, that’s not the point. Rather, the real excitement of Tidal Memory Exo comes in seeing Seamus firmly, and convincingly, state his case as more than a one-trick-pony. The songcraft here - the ebb and flow, the bells and whistles, lapping against the shore - is fantastic. The resultant castle on the seafront, built from the sog and the shrapnel, is a joy to spend time with. Best of all, it doesn’t feel like an end. The Iglooghost octopus still has more limbs to grow; more tricks up more sleeves; send more dope album art please.



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user ratings (51)
3.7
great


Comments:Add a Comment 
AsleepInTheBack
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


10227 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

When you’re all finally knocked loose you should try it’s it’s nice

MiloRuggles
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


3034 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

Yes! Kewl album, unexpected change of pace. There's something between the phaser-like hatsounds and fluttery bass manipulations that gets me all riled up



and noice review!

Avagantamos
May 14th 2024


8937 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

liking this a lot. it's everything I wanted from a new Iglooghost release

AsleepInTheBack
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


10227 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

thank thank x



Also completely forgot that mr ghost is still only like 27 jeez I need to get my act together

JohnnyoftheWell
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


60571 Comments

Album Rating: 3.7

this kid spent enough time playing at music without hitting on anything essential — didn't know he had it him to drop a mostly seamless hard banger, but this is v welcome and puts into context how much i've overrated his past stuff (which flew under the radar bc it conveniently has zero replay value, something else this addresses)

Butkuiss
May 14th 2024


7101 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Keen to give this a check if the hype and album cover are anything to go by

Prancer
May 14th 2024


1614 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

really loving Echo Lace and Germ Chrism

AsleepInTheBack
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


10227 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Johnny have you checked his Snoring thing? So good, completely different and big hidden gem status in his discog fwiw

Odal
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


2100 Comments


gave this a cursory listen on friday and loved it. Need to revisit. Awesome review!

neekafat
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


26231 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

fuck this is rlly dope so far, love the variety here

"Spawn01 ft Cyst" is such a chill bop

DadKungFu
Staff Reviewer
May 14th 2024


4894 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is a stellar review, can't wait to give this a spin

neekafat
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2024


26231 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

yes Ben this review is splendid you've def made the case for this album featuring on the Q2 album art list (;

DadKungFu
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2024


4894 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I like the review and the art better than the album

Colton
May 15th 2024


15312 Comments


the colour coordination between this and the other featured album below it rn is awesome

NastyCrab
May 15th 2024


854 Comments


Haven't really listened to this guy since Neo Wax Bloom, which I loved, excited to check this

Conmaniac
May 15th 2024


27693 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

same^

hype for this, 3 songs in digging so far

Calc
May 15th 2024


17360 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm kinda with dad on this. Gotta give it some more listens

Conmaniac
May 15th 2024


27693 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I now understand the review summary aha…on the last track was a pleasant experience rly close to a 4

AsleepInTheBack
Staff Reviewer
May 15th 2024


10227 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Neek agreeing to feature this on his annual album art specular was my super secret ulterior motive for this write up let’s goooooo

bloc
May 15th 2024


70260 Comments


Cool album



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