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Midtech EP

Matters & Dunaway
Midtech EP
(Self Released)

Matters And Dunaway are the duo of Andre Obin and Thomas Gallagher. They hail from Boston and this 5-track EP is the middle in a trilogy of logically progressing titles (from lowtech to hitech). They play a hybrid of electronic instrumental music that calls to mind everything from Tortoise to Squarepusher. It's obvious that one member of the duo is a fairly accomplished bass player, as that instrument seems to take the lead in most tracks on the album, while other instruments (including some excellent beat-programming) fills in the gaps.

The simply-titled "Movement" feels sort of like a combination of the aforementioned artists as the bassline goes completely slap-happy, rolling and funking out all over the place while the drumming varies between straight-up 4/4 and drum and bass with some nice snare rushes and some very quiet synths add just enough haze around the edges. "Spidercheck" again lets the thunder broom take center stage as it snakes all over and drums again threaten to go hyperspeed while a quiet guitar and some more synth strings add soft flourishes.

After the first two tracks that sort of sound like one longer one, "Orange Code" drops in the middle of the disc and slows things down nicely as a guitar melody ripples like a skipped stone across the top of a slower bassline and subdued drumming. The slower feel continues with "Stars In The Lake" as some ticky tick snare programming fills in the background and a descending guitar melody keeps things moving in slow-motion. "Honduras" closes the disc with an almost completely different sound (perhaps leading into the third of the releases), mixing layers of warm synths with what sounds like a distorted air-raid siren barking in the background as low-end hits feel like artillery shells dropping in the distance. Given the light feel of the first part of the disc, it's a bit of a direction change, but it's also one of the most successful tracks on the entire disc, leaving you wondering whether to feel hopeful or surrounded by a desolate place. The group has some similarities to the also electronic/organic hybrid of The Mobius Band (who are from a similar geographic locale), and like that group sound like they're still trying to hone in on exactly the direction they want to go with their music.

Rating: 6.5