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Valance Drakes - A Patternless And Endless Soul (Yuku)


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Last year Valance Drakes released an 8-track vinyl album via Prague’s avant-garde label YUKU. Conjugating lots of ambient noises, jiggling day-to-day sounds, reverbing textures, and organic timbres rhythmically oriented through side-chained glitch hop beats, A Patternless And Endless Soul is Musique concrète with a purpose. Very rich in terms of sampling, with its subtle details being highlighted by carefully chosen dynamics, while listening to this work one can relate to sounds from a slow-paced edIT to Funkstörung, Matmos, Burial and Autechre, all mixed together inside a Gregorian-reverbing chamber.

Analyzing the concept of the release, maybe the message, not only behind the album title but of its sound, is proposing a reality check on life and its complex nuances. Patterns come and go in random mode, like in our own personal existences. Although life may seem unpredictable, no matter how harsh it can be, a sense of hope is somehow a driving force that sets us on our paths. So, sound wise, the beautiful synth pads seem quite ethereal, or even angelical in the case of the track “In The Nest Of Complex Questions,” which, complemented by the percussion that pounds in an almost falling state of cadence, depicts a struggling, but never surrendering, progression. Speaking of archetypal figures, “Angels Can Still Feel Fear” can also relate to IDM old-timers, as its delicately placed lead synth reminds of AE’s remix of “Keynell.” So even if they are not samples, sounds like those bring reference that soothes the listener creating comfort, and that kind of care is something delightful about Valence Drakes’ music.       

Although this album came out almost a year ago, I haven't paid enough attention to notice. Igloo says things. Recommended.

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