Review: Skrillex - Leaving EP

Sonny Moore is a curious character. His being is made up of critics and fans going for each other's throats - the battleground often being Youtube's comments section. His EPs to date have been far from impressive, all of them carrying a signature cluttered Brostep sound that has aided them in their fall and fall. On Leaving, the aforementioned clutter is toned down slightly, but still present. Scary Bolly Dub is the EP's achilles' heel, but the two tracks sandwiching it are two of Moore's strongest and most enticing efforts to date.

The Reason isn't an atypical Skrillex song; repetitive sampling techniques and deep distortion, which have worked against his music in the past, serve to strengthen the track here; in the past, Skrillex's voice-sampling has been excessively saccharine, like strawberries and cream, but only if those strawberries are rotten. Indeed, this is true on The Reason, but it's nowhere near as trying as on tunes like Bangarang and First of the Year.

The second of this three-track EP, Scary Bolly Dub is a mechanical mess - it's the annoying robot character of the EP - everyone wishes it would just go away, but it's always there, hovering, which does nothing but instill a sense of discomfort. Its Hindi-sampling, apropos of nothing, plummets it into the depths of Skrillex's backlog of pointless and asinine tracks.

Leaving is where the EP strikes a curiosity chord. The Burial influence is clear from the first beat, introducing itself almost identically to the South-London mastermind's Kindred. The difference, however, is that this track lasts for 4 minutes and 46 seconds, but by the end of the third minute, it's hard not to want it to end. Its attempts at accomplishing atmosphere fall flat; quasi-Burial, but not quite. Last year's EP-opener Kindred lasts upwards of 11 minutes, and unlike Leaving, not a single second on it feels wasted.

Skrillex is deserving of praise, though. His experimentation on the latter track of the EP and the toning down of his obnoxious individuality point to good things. It sounds like nothing more than auditory fanfic at the moment, but with the right production and some more experience, Skrillex may yet silence those critics.


Saturday, 19 January 2013

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