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File Under Gloom And Bass

Third Eye Foundation
Little Lost Soul

Third Eye Foundation is a strange and interesting group in that they've (well, Matt Elliot at least) have taken the traditional sounds od drum and bass and twisted them into something decidingly more interesting. While the genre has been completely flooded with watered-down replicants and stale imitations of the old theme, TEF has done something completely new. Is it gloom and bass? It doesn't really matter what you call it, as all you need to know is that it's good.

Little Lost Soul is not only a departure from the genre of drum and bass, but a departure in sound from older work by Third Eye Foundation as well. Although there are still haunting sounds and little skittering echoes of drum and bass crawling their way through the tracks, much of the harshness of the previous albums (especially The Sound Of Violence EP). Really, one could be inclined to call the new work beautiful, albeit in that twisted sort of way that gives you shivers if you hear it too late at night.

Once again, it's also a fairly short album. Containing 7 tracks and running just about 45 minutes, the disc is a much smoother ride either Ghost or You Guys Kill Me, and you'll be able to hear that from the opening strains of "I've Lost That Loving Feline" (titled so because of the death of Elliots cat). With a ghostly chorus singing and some light chiming electronics, the drum beats stutter and slide along in the background, pulling the track along. The first single on the disc, "What Is It With You?" works in sort of the same way.

Things change up a bit on the almost hip-hop inspired beats at the beginning of "Half A Tiger" before the track leaps into action with some looped strings, a pitch bent horn sample and faster beats. The centerpiece of the album is the nearly 11-minute track entitled "Lost" and it features the first real entact vocals on a song ever for the group. After a beginning with soft strings and even a piano, the track morphs into a squealing, swirl of noise by the end. Think of music that would fit perfectly into the scene in Raiders Of The Lost Ark right when the ark is opened (then everything is laid to waste) and you get a good idea of the sound.

The disc closes out with the short, weeping, "Are You Still A Cliche" (a better version of which can be found on the "What Is It With You?" single) and the quiet ending organ chords at the second half of "Goddamnit, You've Got To Be Kind." Overall, it's probably the most accomplished release for the group musically. It isn't as jarring sonically and even though it's a bit quieter and uses more vocal samples, it works just as well. Haunting and good.

Rating: 7.75