Since the golden age of Timbaland, Missy Elliott and Aaliyah, a lot of the R&B imaginary has been alien and futuristic. You can’t just mess with it and make a slaughter, like PC Music or 100 gecs do with pop music. When it comes to R&B you got to be careful, because it’s all matter of chemistry, and that’s why so many tunes from the 00s are still so iconic. For the same reason, when a new path is drawn in the genre, it usually marks a consistent line in how pop music will sound in the next years.
With Seid, the Copenaghen – based superband made up by Yen Towers (part of Age Coin), Minais B and NikkiH2OP (voice of When The Saints Go Machine) takes the task of charting a new course for R&B to another level, chewing up the most dreamy music of the last years and spitting it back out in a new style: extremely elegant and sophisticated but also markedly pop aimed, even more than in their previous releases.
The album starts with the ethereal mounting climax of “Carp 23.5”, a sort of derailed James Blake crashing in a weird dancefloor drop. In fact, there is no shortage of dancefloor moments, like “Altered”, where Yen Towers attitude trough techno comes out at its best, the powerful and disorienting “Jenna”, a sort of deconstructed cloud rap beat, until the last track, the cold and alienating “Wetnotes”, where the sticky and plastic drop never really explodes, in the manner of PC Music artists or Lorenzo Senni.
The album is a masterpiece of miscellaneous elements perfectly orchestrated, and the energetic tracks coexist at once with ethereal and emotional guitar ballads like “Sky Silk”, “Boy U” and “Sectioned”, which remind of the hyper-acoustic progressive music of the Lopatin‘s Age Of , or the pure noise of “Viscose”, where the voice of NikkiH20P becomes totally alien and rarified. The keystone of this magnificent architecture is the beautiful “Thuggish”, a hypnotic vocal loop held up by a wavy mix of flutes, strings and a mellow kick.
After the recent and more participated Isoscele EP, and the widely acclaimed album The Water We Drink, the danish group return to Posh Isolation and confirms to be capable of creating a whole world made of ever-changing landscapes, simultaneously easy to access and enjoyable, but deeply esoteric and ecstatic, like the same title Seid, name of a form of shamanic sorcery practised during the Late Scandinavian Iron Age.
Definitely, one of the best gifts of this early year, don’t sleep on them while you build your AOTY chart.