Peace To Mateo: Some Strange Reason (Young Heavy Souls, 2018)

September 2, 2018 at 11:39 am | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Peace To Mateo: Some Strange Reason

Young Heavy Souls is quickly becoming Detroit’s premier label for all things downtempo, wonky, and experimental hip-hop. They’ve already released records by alumni of Ninja Tune, Ghostly, and Mush Records, as well as several promising local artists. Peace To Mateo (Matt Black) is the head of the label, and his newest album is a concentrated dose of dreaminess featuring ethereal scratching, ghostly voices, and jazzy horns. Rather than a sample-driven beat tape, this is an album of proper compositions, with live recordings weaved in a collage-like manner. There’s a heavy dub influence to the bass and effects of tracks like “Blue Light Ocean”, yet the slight wonkiness of “Splash Damage” clearly puts it in the category of post-Brainfeeder hip-hop. Nothing here ever seems hard or aggressive, but tracks like “Lazerdisk” and “Court the Void” are still just a slight bit twisted or more muscular enough to grab your attention instead of simply fading away into an anonymous stream of chilled-out beats.

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