A departure from the leftfield techno electronics, post-dubstep informed rhythms, and ethereal dream-pop haze of Pazes’ 2015 LP Induced, the Berlin-based (by way of Brazil) producer Lucas Febraro’s newest release Jouissance pares back those elements in favor of subtly veiled menace, odd structures, and creeping labyrinthine melodic motifs.
The funereal dirge of opener “Morning Person” presents itself in movements, shifting soundscapes from serene to uneasy, before dissolving into alien transmissions. Pads buzz and wheeze though the ambiguous digital instrument samples and murky ambience of “Barzadu” and “Until You’re Blue” to a tense yet hypnotic effect.
Sharp, spectral piano melodies and chord progressions in songs such as the minimal “Imply” keep these sparse, loose arrangements intact, as do the trippy chiming voice/choir sample snippets most prominent in “Projectile Weeping” that suggest neo-classical/avant-garde influences. A more familiar electronic pulse emerges on the martial “Jouissance” reconfigured with odd time signatures and whirring synths, a perfect link between the Jouissance EP’s headyness and Induced.
Hailing from the faded architectural utopia of Brasilia, Pazes’ beats carry a certain melancholic modernism.