Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Oneohtrix Point Never - Replica

Oneohtrix Point Never is not only a difficult name, but a difficult sound. Daniel Lopatin, the man behind the bewildering alias, uses samples from 1980s adverts and feeds them through synthesised soundscapes on his latest release, a concept that works better than you’d actually think. From the first listen of "Replica", the title track of his sixth album, the substance of the track is questionable. However, if you’re willing to give the track another listen, it’s haunting beauty comes to the fore.

The video released with the track contains a handful of short, slowed-down clips from the violent, Soviet cartoon ‘Nu pogodi!’, an animation series similar to ‘Tom and Jerry’ but with a hare in place of a mouse, and a chain smoking, law-breaking wolf in place of a cat. Lopatin’s references to popular culture seem to be of an acquired taste, but yet again, a concept that works. There is something incredibly harrowing about seeing a cartoon wolf electrocute itself over and over, set to the eerie piano sample of this track.

The music itself focuses around this piano sample whilst surrounding noises fade in and out. For something that is so minimal and basic, it sounds and feels like it’s been crafted and developed over a number of years. With every listen, "Replica" blossoms, and its beauty becomes more and more evident each time. Those who are willing to explore its allurement will definitely be rewarded.

By Calum Stephen

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