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Oh. – Ecu

Label: MDZ Format: CD,LP

Oh. - EcuOh. are a band from Germany who like to combine Electronica, Dub and Ambience; while there is a steady stream of such movers and shakers coming from that country at the moment (and have been for the last four-five years), Oh are among the most pleasantly gentle of them, streaming with warm basslines, head-down complex drumming and wilted, washed out and occasionally bubbling synths, effects and general computer processing.

Ecu, their debut album, counts as one of the more refreshing electronic breezes to waft across Europe this year; the opening “Freightliner” moves with the same sinuous grace wich Mouse On Mars or Kreidler have deployed, but with the emphasis firmly on enjoyment of the spliffed-out kind. Circling loops bleep with insistent, accreting intensity over upbeat rhythms and funkly steady guitars, and the springy melodies are nothing but pleasing to the ear. There may be few real surprises eveident, but that doesn’t matter when the quality on display is of such a highly listenable order.

“Ballongo” is a case in point, glistening with bright enegy and Dubwise rewinds on the echo, bringing Eighties Syth-Pop into contact with digital Reggification and a suitably indeterminate title sample to punctuate the pschedelic interplay. There’s the jaunty ethnodelia of “Lo Level” to, which also shows its influences to be somewhere in the realm of My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts and the PoMo Emulations of Laurie Anderson‘s Pacifica album Mr. Heartbreak (check the Oh track “Galapagos” for further partial confirmation, with Jazzy keyboard tinges and pedal-steel Exotica). Such avant-poloneck comparisons should not however distract from the essential fact that Ecu is as good to skank to as for toking, and as refreshing a bath in freshly-drawn Electronica as the head doctor ordered.

-Antron S. Meister-

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