Though officially released back in September, Matt Lange‘s debut album Ephemera is too unforgettable not to review.
The album marks the Berklee School of Music alumni’s first foray on deadmau5’s very own mau5trap imprint, and he explains in a press release that, “the album’s really a snapshot of where I am right now as an artist. It’s this turning point where I have one foot in the world of dance music, and the other foot in a whole different direction.”
Completely giving in to his dark side, Ephemera unfolds hauntingly like something pulled out of a film noir storyline. He moves effortlessly from progressive house to dark, driving techno for an effect that is uniquely his own. The album is meant to be listened to in succession, with each track building on the sinister motif of the preceding track. He has even outfitted it with a cinematic intro called “With Every Intention Of”, and short outro, that shares the album title, as a means of tying everything together into a fluid whole.
Perhaps already his most popular track from the album, “My Love Aside” is a richly arranged piece of techno that intersperses deep vocal cuts against generous atmospherics and a low-snarling bassline. It’s a prime example of Lange’s ability to craft highly emotional soundscapes through his use of contrast as it utilizes creeping chord progressions and tenuous effects.
He teams up with British veteran Quivver on The Fever for a rising anthem that keeps a steady house rhythm as its foundation. Again, skulking vocal snippets pierce the surface to give the track an added industrial facet, and keep things rooted in shadowed territory.
With cover art that matches its dusky inner-workings, Ephemera could all at once soundtrack an after-hours warehouse party, or serve as an eerie release into your subconscious. Its intricate, evolving layers are cause enough to give the album a listen from start to finish, and you can pick up your copy here.