Offshore – Pacer EP (Big Dada)

pacerOffshore is the nom-de-guerre of London domiciled Scotsman Ewan Robertson. ‘Pacer’ is the latest in his series of EPs, now migrated onto the well respected Big Dada label. There are five tracks proper, and if truth be told it took me on a bit of a journey. I was flipping through CDs while engaged in some long distance driving when I first heard it.

The first two tracks (and the last two it turned out later) are sparse and spasming dance electro of a deceptively raw but refined kind – full of blips and hanging spaces, the sort of thing to become imbued into and hypnotised by, despite the squelching bravado. It’s intelligently put together, quieter than Four Tet. Perhaps if you’re already a fan of Diplo this might be your thing…

This was my train of half-engaged thought when along came the middle track ‘Pearls and Butlers’ and simply blew me away in one go. It’s the only one with vocals on, courtesy of Cienfeugos, about whom I know not a thing. Whoever, he has an ache and melancholy draw to his voice that sits alongside the loose limbed minimalism of the keys. It’s got hooks that will snare like barbs. Massively the standout of the EP, which they acknowledge that by tacking on a radio edit of the track, the mystery to me is why it is so anonymously hidden way as the middle of five numbers where it runs a grave risk of simply being overlooked.

Maybe it’s a device, like those unfortunates whose job it is to persuade passers by into their employers restaurants. Get shot down by the one with vocals, and then hang around and spend time with the less obvious  just-as-rewarding other pieces.

[Rating: 3.5]

Offshore – Pacer EP (preview) by Offffshore

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