Spanning four tracks of intricate and ever-shifting rythmic progressions, Bambi OFS’ debut EP YAKKA frames a tense and glittering ethnofictional world, combining kaleidoscopic percussive textures with a precisely economical aesthetic.
Extending on Cédric’s exploration of sound.space.perception as a unified phenomenon in his sound installations and noise projects, the record artwork features a photography shot by ethnomusicologist Judith Becker during a Bebuten ceremony in Bali: the picture evokes her inquiry in the trance phenomenon, in which she demonstrates that our ability to enjoy trance and its healing virtues is inversely proportional to our sense of separatedness from the rest of the world. Meshing together numerous influences, and reflecting on the self/other dichotomy, YAKKA is a playful invitation to reconsider our identification processes.
A new EP from Bambi OFS shares the virtues of eclecticism and harsh-edged charm. This record draws squarely on club music, as the closing track attests with vintage synth motifs, a squelching hint of acid, and a rapid-fire beat. The preceding tracks have tantalising touches of something more exotic. On the opening track, the beat’s hollow cadence evokes an organic essence of gamelan. It’s a surprisingly short jump from techno’s synthetic self-awareness.
The cover image (“shot by ethnomusicologist Judith Becker during a Bebuten ceremony in Bali”) again speaks a thousand words. A line is boldly drawn: from gamelan to techno; from an Indonesian trance practice to the gyrations of clubgoers. It might be heavy-handed, to use spiritual traditions as window-dressing. As a fan of both genres separately, I found the results unarguable. The third track is the highlight, where struck metallophones form a frantic, metallic foundation. On top, a more relaxed beat, booms of bass, and squawks of synth summon a kind of hyper-industrial mirage.
Of course, clubs and abandoned warehouses are not the only places to dance. Beats are as ancient as drumskins, and the urge to dance around primordial fires is elemental. Dancing alone in your pyjamas and headphones is good exercise too. This record come highly recommended as soundtrack to whatever stage of isolation you might be enjoying.
Samuel Rogers – A Closer Listen