Todd Modes: New Life LP (100 Limousines, 2019)

April 26, 2019 at 7:36 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Todd Modes: New Life LP

Detroit’s Todd Modes, whose previous releases include an EP on Fit Sound and a track on a Detroit Electronic Quarterly compilation, inaugurates a new label called 100 Limousines with this short album of laid-back, reflective tracks. Starting with a loungey intro, “Waves In Love” is where the deep house beats kick in, backed by drifting guitars and dubby traces of vocals. “Time Frame” is on more of a dusty downtempo tip, with carefully folded vocals and sax loops, and it seems to fade away before it really starts to take off. “The Archer” similarly establishes a deeply zoned-out downtempo groove, and before you know it, it’s over. The half-melted “That’s Right” is the album’s trippiest and most addictive cut, and of course it’s only two and half minutes. “Finding Balance” pairs forceful but carefully beting drums with expansive, droning synths and a very sparse bassline and Brazilian-sounding vocals. “Breathing New Life” feels like an unraveled deep house track, with very loose, vamping kick drums and hi-hats that seem like they’re going to a kick into a steady beat but don’t, yet it sounds fine anyway because the pads are so soothing. “Continue In Peace” is a candid but bittersweet reflection focusing around a sample of an old timer talking about how kind and gentle his grandson was as a youth, saying “I keep talking in past turns because that’s how he used to be”.

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