'Shelter' is the debut album from London artist/producer Moire. Billed as an immersive, collaborative experience for the listener, 'Shelter' represents the fruition of Moire's foundation work to establish his musical signature and identity.
The nine track album is a succinct affair with little indulgence and, happily, little filler. Whilst definitely being of the moment, the sonic sound platter that is played out before you also has some very nice backward glancing references. There is a distinctively laid back Balearic, white isle atmosphere to many of the tracks as soundscapes conjure up sunrises and the chilled out vibes of early hours clubland.
Whilst none of the tracks possess the upbeat tempo of, say, Energy 52 or 808 State, there is a clearly audible lineage from one to the other. 'No Gravity' is a particularly fine example of Moire's influences being translated into his own individual style to produce something fresh and intoxicating. The darker, deeper, dingier alternative to Café Del Mar's clean mix is refreshingly grimy with its waves of intermittent keyboards, its heady and hypnotic arrangement and its colossal bass.
Similarly creative is the Bones vocalised cut 'Dali House'. The sub tectonic bass line, high hat shuffle and livelier beat produce a whirring mesh of mesmerising music. The high hat accents arise again on 'Stars' as the very inventive bass line and infectious revolving synth loops play out through the immediately appealing track. The only other vocalised numbers on this ostensibly instrumental debut are 'Rings', featuring Charlie Tappin, and 'Mr Figure'. Even here the vocal treatments are kept to a minimum, working more to add subtle touches and flourishes, complimenting rather than competing with the soundtrack.
'Theme' draws the album to a close with a relaxed reserved reverence. In contrast to the more intense, brooding, Bonobo like opener 'Attitude', 'Theme' winds proceedings up by gearing down slowly but to great effect. Each element seems to play a small part in the puzzle but the resultant arrangement works as the composer intended, the sum of its parts being greater than they are individually.
'Shelter' by Moire is an accomplished debut clearly showing intent and direction that builds on his formative work. However, whilst there is plenty to enjoy, it still feels a little unfinished, more of a stepping stone towards greater things ahead than the complete article.
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