By Jamie Reysen
Anything but Basic.
Colorado-based producer Paul Basic (Paul Brandt) released his debut 8-track EP The Mirror through the Pretty Lights Music label at the end of September. Basic brings something new and unique to the small but rapidly growing PLM label, which includes heavy-hitters like Break Science and Gramatik.
The first track, “On It,” opens with a strong brass section, announcing that Basic has arrived—and he’s come armed with eclectic electro melodies, heavy drum beats and big bass.
Some tracks, like the highly digitalized “Jaded,” speed along quickly, but a number of his songs progress slowly and more purposefully. The EP’s best track is “Daydream,” which puts a fresh new spin on Belgian band Wallace Collection’s 1968 release of the same name. Distorted bass twists and turns alongside an ethereal vocal sample that skips like a scratched CD as it beckons the listener deeper into a dreamlike state.
From there, Basic gracefully transitions into “Cops,” another strong song. It’s got a beat that creeps with foreboding before erupting into sad wails and siren sounds, encapsulating feelings of danger and despair.
The EP features two versions of “HBR” – an original and a remix. The original version is interesting on its own, but fellow PLM artist Michal Menert’s remix is a multidimensional attention-grabber. Menert gives it a jazzier, big band sound with heavy brass sections and chopped female vocals. It’s fitting that his sound enhances Basic’s foundation; they’ve been making music together since high school, when the two played in a band with PLM founder Derek Vincent Smith.
Basic’s “The Mirror” is certainly worth checking out, and like all music on the PLM label, it’s free to download. He’ll also join Menert, Gramatik and SuperVision this November on six of their seven Colorado tour dates. If you’re in the area, I urge you to catch this must-see lineup
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