Matthew Dear’s music is a soulful, funky, smooth tech influenced melange that falls somewhere Beck, Talking Heads and the modern Berlin/Paris tech explosion. A definitively US take on techno pop -his is the sound of the modern American city – one that is Post-Detroit. He wears his influences on his sleeve, but clearly has an international feel. Here is an American detroit tech house inspired producer who isn’t afraid of admitting that there is life beyond the decaying soul of the motor city.
As American as cherry pie – but with a european flavour. Cold, hard, yet full of smooth, progressive groove.
Matthew Dear plays at The Deaf Institute tonight, 7.30pm. £8.50
Dark Screens is the latest music project from J Hughes, a visual artist and musician from Manchester. Formerly of the industrial post-punk group movetoconnect, Hughes is also known for his animation, illustration and video art installation work.
With his Dark Screens project, it is clear that Hughes is taking a slightly more melodic approach to music than he did with his work in movetoconnect. Gone are the hard edged guitar riffs, bass solos and crashing drum rhythms, which have been replaced by a much softer, atmospheric and refined sound. Upon listening to the several demos he has available, and in particular Nocturnal, Hughes’ work as a visual artist has clearly influenced his music project – he has a real talent for creating images and landscapes.
In a similar vein to contemporaries Advances in Mathematics and Young British Artists, Dark Screens shows a great balance between the demonstration of intricate instrumental musicianship and entertaining melodies that push the music forwards. Nocturnal specifically really stands out, with a beautiful guitar line that would sit proudly along anything Merucury Prize winners The xx have done.
Listen to more from Dark Screens on SoundCloud.