Beats on a boat?
Veteran electronica artists Daedelus’ new eight-track EP, Righteous Fists of Harmony, is a concept release—sort of. There’s no real narrative arc, but the beats and compositions have these retro homage vibes of bygone soundscapes. So, there’s that. And there’s an aquatic thing going on.
The opening track, “An Armada Approaches,” is a stately, cadenced synth bit, à la Wendy Carlos’ Moog-synth work on A Clockwork Orange. At least, before it transitions into a decayed synth/high-hat/snare backbeat and cool bassoon-sounding melody bit. A lot like, perhaps, a navy hymn.
And the journey continues: Track two, “Tidal Waves Uprising,” commences with nylon-string guitar, snare rolls, harp and cymbals and plays out just like cruising across ocean waves might, were it an ocean of Getz and Gilberto. “Order of the Golden Dawn” invites back the same, albeit more structured, nylon guitar and vocalist Laura Darling, and this is the EP’s siren song, complete with mystical alto vocalizations and Impanema-esque inspired guitar play.
The deeper the album heads out to sea, the less its horizons and structure remain clear. “Stampede Me” is seasick with whispering male vocals and wandering guitar and ambient noise. And the closer, “Fin de Siècle,” wraps it all up in beautiful synth-strings and harp tidiness. Ahoy—it’s something different, experimental, lost at sea.