CD, Hyment Records, 2009
Lament Element is the latest offering from Jeff Dodson. The release is a versatile assault of heavy distortion, ethereal strings and chaotic beats.
The first song, “Till it Disappeared”, introduces this album perfectly with low rumbling basses and ominous strings amidst choppy breaks and weeping pads. “Long Horrible Shadows” kicks up the bpm-count with glitched technically efficient beatwork and distorted basslines. “The Stones” eases in slowly to pull back and slug you in the jaw with sporadic breaks and a slick d’n’b influenced bass pulling below the reverbed samples. “Madness Rides the Star Wind” is a loose, experimental drum struggling against strings and “The Old Growth” creeps with low strings like a home invader as the beat races with an increased heart rhythm. “Infinitely Old” is an experiment in synthetic drum work starting as a loose hiss to a sporadic structure sliding effortlessly into the next song, “Infinitely Horrible”, this latter piece jolting with heavily distorted stabs and somber strings intersecting the hard breaks. The next song, “Tommy”, is a hard steppin’ “Rosemary’s Baby” – it stomps with FX-heavy breaks and percussive ambience to finish you off at 2 minutes with a layer of sweeping low synths. “Element l1” is an intermission of slow, lulling choir and sighing pads and it’s follow-up, “Color My Dreams”, is a stuttering masterpiece of slap happy drums, perfectly placed samples, strings and a hint of Meat Beat Manifesto influences. Picking up the pace again, enter: “Pals Shotgun”, a song which is classic d’n’b-style with some style; paced low synths, tonal electronic clicks, precise drum insertion, 16-bit synth goodness. “Worrit Betrake” is experimental drums at their finest, speeding up and slowing down like manic traffic listening to IDM. “Carrion Signal” rips your subwoofer to shreds, cranking up slowly and then letting the beats fly like shrapnel – it carefully closes the album by slowing down to an experimental ambience of distortion and electronic chirps.
“Lament/Element” is a perfect chaos of mood and mode of expression, ranging from dnb to glitch/experimental to ambient orchestral grandeur – an album which is a must have for fans of intelligent electronics. This will be a return selection in my collection showing wear and tear of multiple repeat cycles in my stereo.
— James Church