G. Marcell, Sound Extravagance EP

[Machining Dreams]


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Chicago’s G. Marcell plays up his experimental side on the Sound Extravagance EP, his first solo release for Hakim Murphy’s Machining Dreams label. This five-track EP, a heady home-brew of MPC gymnastics and raw Chicago house, covers more ground than expected — no mean feat considering the label’s open-minded discography. Marrying improbable risks to the bedrock pleasures of house, Marcell cuts a Theo Parrish-like figure here. Sound Extravagance is bookended by a couple of sampler spazz-outs that resolve into its most floor-friendly material.

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The EP opens on “BeatBr8ker”‘s discordant samples, organic sounds massed into squeaking piles, soon joined by some no-nonsense drum programming that orients the samples’ unsteady heave. The track’s blurry tension between analog and digital recalls Terrence Dixon’s uncanny From the Far Future Pt. 2. Final track, “UFusedDude,” on the other hand, assails the listener with stuttering, juke-inflected samples, making for a headlong dash that’s cooled down slightly by some plush ambience. It’s harder to divine the purpose of the flightless “SubDivision,” which literalizes the Parrish connection with some kung-fu movie dialog that wouldn’t have been out of place on “Any Other Styles.” Rather than switch gears, the tracks remains in movie-dialog mode for most of its length, proceeding to quote a lengthy and not-entirely successful “Who’s on first?” riff from “Purple Rain” while a guttural bass line and impatient kick lurk in the background. Once the funny business is out of the way, Marcell just lets the track peter out after an uneventful minute.

“2MinutePleasure” seems primed to follow suit, opening with another quote — some movie drunk slurring “women of substance…big, meaty you know?” — but transforms instead into a whirling dervish of a disco loop, sloshed through filters and over too quickly. But the EP’s biggest achievement is the Latin-flavored lover’s house of “She’s Fly” (Love Her Conversation Mix). The track is the EP’s most spacious, although it is also overlaid with some unique vocal work. Granted, the song’s answering-machine premise and the female caller’s mystical cooing don’t look promising on paper. But the dialogue established once Marcell’s voice comes in is far more believable than, say, Carl Craig’s Martian sex fantasies were on Agoria’s “Speechless.” This record asks for the listener’s indulgence and rewards it, well, extravagantly.

Trackbacks

Little White Earbuds January Charts 2013 | Little White Earbuds  on February 1, 2013 at 10:47 AM

[…] G. Marcell, “She’s Fly” (Love Her Conversation Mix) [Machining Dreams] (buy) 07. Manhooker, “Club Anonymous” (Rotciv Extended Club Mix) […]

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