Written on 17/01/2012 by Shaun Holland • No Comments

Borland – Romantic Animals

Gulf Records
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Giving that Borland shares it’s name with a software company you might expect an album of machine like precision in which it is hard to find much human emotion , but this EP reveals a soundscape that sings thematically with a winter backdrop, and encapsulates the feeling of impending long nights and isolation. Through simple melody , complex changing rhythms and an exciting, emotive sonic experience Borland have produced an EP that evokes both modern and classic electronica.

The organs sounds of opener ‘Wildlife’ sets the scene of the EP by creating a sparse environment for the listener. Unlike a lot of electronic music this first track is interesting throughout and constantly introduces new melodies just as your ears become satisfied with the previous one. ‘Delphi’ is a reflective track that makes good use of subtle changes in texture such as the reversed vocal. ‘Fire,Ice and Dynamite’ includes long synth swells reminiscent of M83’s ‘Run into flowers’  back before they had their recent success overload, but this track doesn’t quite reach the epic levels of an M83 song. The tracks are often crescendo based with a spacious opening being substituted for a more rhythmically and texturally involved sound later on.The final track ‘Moondog’ builds up throughout then leaves you alone at the end , with only the sound of the wind to accompany you, it is a fitting end to the ethereal sound of the EP.



Borland’s mixture of an early Aphex Twin style with more modern instrumental electronica makes for a diverse EP that suggests that the future of this band could lie anywhere they choose whether it is down the more vocal driven pop style of recent M83 as we have seen from their recent collaborations with The Kites of San Quentin, or due to their ability to create an emotive sonic environment around themes of the natural world they could take a similar path to the likes of Boards of Canada. As the hard working and prolific past of Borland suggests no doubt they will reveal the next step soon.



Romantic Animals is available from Gulf Records right now!


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