Gulls in THE WIRE

The November issue of The Wire features a solid review of the new Gulls 12″ in the Critical Beats column!

Courtesy of Philip Sherburne. Peep it.

“Portland, Oregon is a long way from any significant electronic-music hubs, and as for Jamaican influences—well, besides an out-of-the-way jerk chicken establishment or two, there isn’t much. But that isolation also entails the freedom to experiment, a quality amply evident in the first release from Portland’s Boomarm Nation, a label dedicated to “avant soundsystem musics” and inaugurated with an EP from the label founder’s solo project, Gulls. “Mean Sound” is a strange beast, with a syncopated rhythmic base that’s similar to dubstep and a 115-BPM tempo that couldn’t be more unusual for the form. A brawny synthesizer bass muscles the tune forward, leaving a trail of incidental sounds and stray percussion in its wake. The sounds seem to come from the cheaper end of the vintage-synth spectrum, but they lend their own character to the production. “Vetted” is a mid-tempo dub-Techno jam fashioned from spindly synthesizers and oodles of delay, and from all the manic action in the background, you can tell that these are real knobs being tweaked in real time. Strategy (Paul Dickow) rounds out the release with a “Mean Sound” remix that adds triple-time drum fills and spring reverb around the main synth riff, sounding like some undiscovered electro-dub relic from the late ’80s.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *