It's a great sign for the music business to have young artists challenging themselves to find their own music formula, by creating fascinating cut-and-paste montages of different genres like Ambient, Acid Jazz, Electronica and Funk, with highly interesting results.
One of the most interesting projects recently released by producer and musician Ricky Simmonds, a.k.a. Twig Pigeon and involving the aforementioned genres is called Beyonds, a sort of autobiographical EP where the New Zealand-based artist translates, through his songs, the life's learning curve he has been into in recent years.
Beyonds is cleverly constructed, with Simmonds drawing the moods and the atmospheres of the EP through different layers of sounds, shaping the right sound carpets of his songs like a mosaic, then allowing the different Guest Vocalists present on the record to complete Simmonds' sonic artwork with their vocal performances.
The Aphex Twin inspired instrumental opener The Thought (It's Over Me) leaves space to an aptly written Drum'N'Bass number called Phantom, where Special Guest Martine on lead vocals does a truly excellent job.
Beyonds Part One and Part Two are certainly among the most interesting points of the album. The introduction of the Horns on the Electronica-meets-Ambient layer of sound on Beyonds Part One works a treat, with Guest Vocalist's Adam Page's voice sampled on repeat, forming an unusual but highly intriguing sonic mash-up.
Part Two has, instead, a more melodic side to it, almost a Torch Song built on a slow Drum'N'Bass beat, with echoes of Electronica creating, together with the help of Guest Vocalist Rogue, a dreaming melody running through the whole song.
Chemistry, featuring Vanessa Stacey on vocals, is the real diamond of the album. Simmonds lets aside computer programmings and samples, allowing more center stage to Stacey's soulful voice and to the song's lyrics (I am just keep falling deeper..... Don't look down...), lyrics that certainly must mean a lot to Simmonds/Twig Pigeon.
There are a lot of great intuitions and original ideas on Twig Pigeon's new work that speak to new and old generations of music fans. Beyonds is a record that shows an artist that is not afraid at all of gambling on amalgamating different genres, because his music follows a natural artistic flow and speaks openly the language of his beating heart. A very inspired body of work.
Beyonds is out know and it is available on Twig Pigeon's Bandcamp Page