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Yuki Tendo – Saturnine

Yuki Tendo - Saturnine

3″ CD-R, Le Petit Machiniste, 2007

Crystal clear, yet terrifyingly complex beats coupled with mechanised atmospherics. Haunting sound effects echoing over repetitive melodies. Exciting, sensitively structured sequencing that builds beautifully before floating back down to the grim inter-track silence.
And if that’s not enough for you, let’s move on to the second track of Yuki Tendo’s “Saturnine” EP. Or the third, or even fourth. There’s something here to cater for almost any taste in electronic music. From the brutal hard house bass of “Scream Blue Murder” overlaid on what sounds like some heavily altered vocal samples, to the gently ringing, slowly altering moods of “Saturnine” – this is one versatile recording. It’s also very aptly named: melancholia and bitterness seep from every bar, speaking volumes of regret and dissatisfaction.
This is an intelligent and emotive offering and, if one manages to get past the erratic nature of the breakbeat percussion, enough influences mingle and collide to satisfy a very large audience. Just don’t expect a euphoric reaction from one of the grumpiest musical self-portraits (exemplified by “Vanitas”, the first track described in detail above) on record. Or even the calming influence so much music manages to convey: the proverbial “savage breast” would find very little in the way of soothing charms listening to this mini-album release.


— David vander Merwe

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