Teebs - or Mtendre Mandowa to give him his arguably more evocative real name - is a Los Angeles resident and affiliate of the city's prescient Brainfeeder collective; a posse of unorthodox beat makers steadily deconstructing hip hop by creating a thousand other splinter movements that sound like they're from another planet. With Mandowa busy on numerous other projects in between, 'Estara' follows a surprisingly long wait as the follow up to his 2010 debut 'Ardour'.
Unlike some of his loosely associated peers (The Gaslamp Killer, Tokimonsta, Samiyam), Mandowa's focus is much less break orientated - his preference being more for hazier sunscapes and layers of disorientated instruments. As a sound, it's best described as somewhere between Boards of Canada on happy pills and the fluttery organic ambience of Susumu Yokota on his landmark release 'The Grinning Cat'; definitely making it pristine ear nourishment in a ballistic world.
As ever, this approach is an acquired taste that will leave the traditionalists searching for a foothold, but there are fragments of normality to cling on to. Mandowa's approach is to smother the listener in layers with the reduced beats and plaintive vocals of 'Holiday' making for an unlikely love song, whilst two notes of guitar loops and the water falling bells of 'Shoouss Lullaby' point to less comfortable territory. Here, then, is an artist who makes music in his apartment that feels like it should be played in a vineyard, or by the sea; the warmth and clear-eyed beauty of 'Piano Months' a summer holiday song for the deserted beaches of our dreams.
Continue reading: Teebs - E S T A R A Album Review
Mtendere Mandowa aka Teebs is certainly a creative individual whose journey as a skater and artist led him to become a musician. Hailing from New York his move to LA influenced his journey into the electronic music scene. He certainly has proved his ability landing a track on Mary Anne Hobbs's Wild Angels compilation and attending the 2008 Red Bull Music Academy in Barcelona. This rapid rise presented the opportunity to meet Flying Lotus who grabbed Teebs into the Brainfeeder stable.
Continue reading: Teebs, Ardour Album Review