Published: January 31, 2013
By: Jordan Calvano
The lush instrumentations of Emancipator (Doug Appling) possess an unmatched duality; something often missing in an electronic producer’s repertoire. Whether you’re shredding endless powder at your local mountain, studying for a grueling exam, or simply bridging the game between consciousness and dream state, Emancipator is the lone choice. To be honest, Emancipator’s productions possess an unmatched triality to them, but who’s counting?
On Appling’s latest endeavor via his own Loci Records imprint, the Portland-based producer extraordinaire gives us Dusk To Dawn. A breathtaking, thoroughly addicting, and dare we even say life-changing release that grabs you by the gut and doesn’t let go.
Jumpstarting the album’s unforgettable expedition is “Minor Cause.” The spellbinding tune gains your undivided attention with an uncanny coalescence of daunting violin tones, hip-hop influenced snares, and faint yet hypnotizing background vocals.
“Outlaw” paints a blissful and momentously vivid image of an adrenaline-laden pilgrimage through dimly lit forests. Melancholy is quickly kicked to the curb, as nostalgic soundwaves carry your increasingly beating heart further into undiscovered territories.
The album’s title track is inescapably touching and intriguing. Each uplifting note serves a crucial piece of the entire soundscape, simultaneously titillating each individual sense while purifying your soul. Mandolin, guitar and viola, all backed by Emancipator’s eye-opening craftsmanship.
“The Way” shines a refreshing light on Dominic Lalli’s (Big Gigantic) coveted saxophone faculties, straying from extravagantly fast-paced and focusing on a mellow, coffee-shop ambiance. These bewitching elements fearlessly combine with Middle-Eastern vibes, injecting unadulterated passion directly into your eardrums.
“Natural Cause” continues the album’s endearing streak of heavenly live instruments, creating an inseparable marriage between visceral piano melodies, entrancing violin sections, and lofty drums. Don’t be ashamed if you shed a tear--it’s that type of song.
Emancipator’s third album is an undisputed masterpiece, and “Left speechless” doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface. Press play, close your eyes, and let the journey truly begin.
Photos by: Esther Rubyan (www.rubyanphotograph.zenfolio.com / Taken at the Magic Stick in Detroit, MI - Jan 24th - with Eliot Lipp