Floating Points, Vacuum EP


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To say it has been a good year for Sam Shepard, aka Floating Points, is a gross understatement. He started 2009 as a relative unknown, but thanks to four faultless releases has quickly become an exciting new talent keenly watched by all manner of musical enthusiasts. His debut 7″ release, “For You,” quickly pricked up the ears of purveyors of chalky hip-hop and squashed funk before he grabbed the listening cavities of house heads with the endless cresting waves of sunshine on wax via “Love Me Like This.” Left-footed dubstep pundits were also sated with his “J&W Beat” twelve on Mu and now he returns with possibly his best work yet on his own imprint with the “Vacuum EP.”

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“Vacuum Boogie” begins with cold foggy breaths pushing around a kick and clap before being flooded by aqueous, slinking synths and a whirlpools of drifting pads. When the descending bass line drops it feels like mountains of sand slipping away from beneath you, dropping you down into a deep netherworld of subterranean slow-mo boogie. “Truly” floors me every time I listen to it; how can one song pack in so many ecstatic melodies and not sound like a endorphin addled, jangled mess? Testament to Floating Points’ classical training, each key line works lovingly with chord pulses, synth leads and ethereal tinkling. A frame by frame house cut backed with a deep dubwise bass line sounding more akin to the likes of Pangaea, “Truly” sounds like the musical equivalent of pushing yourself out to a sun-baked sea on a giant marshmallow. “Argonaute II” works its elements in a similar fashion to “Love Me Like This,” building its unhurried, winding groove and melodies to a peak, rolling them off and reassembling them again. Like the other cuts its slippery polyphonic rhythms carry with them a distinct aquatic flavor, though this is perhaps the slinkiest of them all. Carried along by gorgeously warm organ tones, “Argonaute II” rounds off another prodigious release by one of 2009’s breakout producers.

kuri  on September 21, 2009 at 10:20 PM

just picked this up myself and it’s every bit as good as you say.

Joe H  on September 22, 2009 at 7:29 AM

Yes, this is a really fresh 12″.”Vacuum Boogie” is a stand out for sure. For anyone in & around Leeds on Sun 25th October they can find Floating Points playing for free! @ the brand new Distrikt bar 4pm – Midnight.

ehbenoit  on September 22, 2009 at 8:53 AM

absolutely adore this record…

sq  on September 22, 2009 at 11:03 AM

such a great record :)

tom/pipecock  on September 22, 2009 at 12:25 PM

waiting on my copy of this in the mail. as good as it and “love me like this” are, i don’t get the planet mu record at all. i can hardly believe they are all made by the same person.

Sam  on September 22, 2009 at 12:41 PM

Yep – that’s a wonderful record.

gmos  on September 23, 2009 at 6:50 AM

I like the main tunes on both this and “love me like this”, some of the other stuff ain’t doing it for me though

Le K  on September 28, 2009 at 4:38 AM


Anton  on September 29, 2009 at 4:23 PM

As much as I liked “Love Me Like This,” I just can’t get behind “Truly” on the player here. The looming bass line is kind of cool, but the main progression sounds a bit juvenile. I don’t know, it’s just not *that* great.

Joe H  on September 29, 2009 at 6:04 PM

@ Anton my copy arrived today & I must say the player, or any other online clips dont do it justice. When “Truly” opens up on a big sound system & those melodies come floating out its really something special. 12″ contender of the year for me.

Per Silverbeat  on October 1, 2009 at 6:15 AM

Totally agree Joe, you really have to hear it on some big speakers. Definitely a contender too

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