Lone “Galaxy Garden” on R&S Records,May 7th
Over the past couple of years, Manchester-based producer Lone (a.k.a. Matt Cutler) has become a fully fledged reinvention of his former self. Leaving behind the hip-hop seasoned abstraction and hazy beatscapes of his notable Ecstasy & Friends and Lemurian albums for a quicker-paced sound that draws on a much heavier Chicago house / Detroit Techno and early 90’s London rave/hardcore sound. With his last album proper Emerald Fantasy Tracks & last year’s R&S debut Coreshine Voodoo, we saw a honing of these styles. Continuing his ethereal journey through space and time where these previous two outings left off, new album Galaxy Garden – that you will hopefully have in your ears right now – is without doubt his most complete body of work to date.
Title: Galaxy Garden
Label: R&S Records
01 New Colour
02 The Animal Pattern
03 As A Child (With Machinedrum)
04 Lying In The Reeds
05 Dragon Blue Eyes
06 Crystal Caverns 1991
08 Dream Girl / Sky Surfer
09 Earth’s Lungs
10 Cthulhu (With Machinedrum)
11 Stands Tidal Waves
12 Spirals (With Anneka)
The varied excursions on display unearth new corners to the wunderkind, whilst maintaining his signature sound and cinematic overtones. Opener New Colour lays down the album’s mandate with layers of symbiotic sound-scapes. On into The Animal Pattern, a rolling 8-bit bastardisation where visions of Out Run’s Splash Wave come flooding back again. Nomrex label head machine drum makes an appearance on two tracks adding his hazy vocals to As A Child & Cthulhu. The latter evolving into a mid tempo broken roller with key stabs which wouldn’t sound out of place on a Japan record.
Thing of beauty, Lying in the Reeds finds Cutler in one of his more melodic, melancholic and reflective moods. This gives way to the ambient drone of Dragon Blue Eyes and through to Crystal Caverns 91; revival stabs, hardcore remnants, a frenetic cadence and we’re already half way through the album. Two uptempo, blissed out stuttered motion bangers – proceed in the form of Raindance & Dream & Girl/Sky Surfer. It’s Raindance and the incredible Earth’s Lungs where he wears his love of Aphex Twin and Warp most prominently, all the time maintaining a very Lone take on it. The album closes this Lone chapter with vocalist Anneka – who’s worked with the likes of Falty DL, Starkey, Ital Tek, Vex’d – and the track Spirals, which is the closest you’ll get to Cutler writing a pop song.
A rollercoaster ride of playful nods to a plethora of scenes and influences past, present and future, a residency at Manchester hot-spot Hoya:Hoya, upcoming shows all over the place, support for his tracks from the likes of Caribou, Diplo, Kode 9, Dark Sky, Rustie, James Holden, Martyn, Joy Orbison – to name just a few – remixes for Radiohead, Tensnake & Underworld already under his belt; it’s going to be quite a year for Lone. Cutler ended 2010 with his tracks Pineapple Crush and Once In A While featured in every respectable ‘Best of 2010’ roundup (Resident Advisor, Phonica, Juno & Fact Magazine). This an album to be treasured and one that will no doubt, end up in even more polls come the end of twenty twelve.