2017 Album of the Year Write-Up: Neō Wax Bloom – Iglooghost

Listen: YouTube (Playlist of full album)

Iglooghost’s début full-length on Flying Lotus’ zany, boundary-pushing label, Brainfeeder, is an eclectic collection of songs each full of adventurous ideas and relentless attention-to-detail. Leading up to its release the producer tweeted out that one of his goals with the album was to abstain from simply looping phrases, and instead to chase new ideas with each passing bar of music. If nothing else, this album should be praised for the ridiculous amount of dedication such a task would take. Nevertheless, the actual music that comes out of this creation process is truly incredible. There are moments that induce awe like the ancient and inspirational chords throughout track “Teal Yomi/Olivine”; moments of wandering curiosity exemplified on “Sōlar Blade” which sounds like an explorer walking through a magical forest, and moments that relax only to suddenly cut to a dark room with flashing lights full of sweaty dancers like on the album’s penultimate track “Peanut Choker.” One of the year’s most intriguing consecutive run of tracks can be found in this album’s first five songs. From opener “Pale Eyes” through SOTY “White Gum” each tune seamlessly flows into the next creating a foundation for Iglooghost’s outlandish world by completely bulldozing over traditional musical sounds. The album lulls for a couple tracks thereafter, not so much out of boredom but more out of introspection – it seems like it’s trying to find its footing once again and on the album’s climactic song “Infinite Mint” the album succeeds. The track features a beautiful, non-lyrical sung contribution from vocalist cuushe. Iglooghost’s percussive, haunting production on the track and cuushe’s melodious, stirring vocals weave into one another to create a gorgeous centerpiece for the album – listening to the track leaves a longing for more intimate and emotive tracks from the budding producer. And that is the beauty of Neō Wax Bloom (2017): the potential of a young, incredibly talented producer shines brightly, and there is certainly only upward movement in his future.

FAVORITE TRACKS: Super Ink Burst, Bug Thief, Sōlar Blade, White Gum, Infinite Mint, Teal Yomi/Olivine, Peanut Choker

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