Another Electronic Musician: Patience

Saying that Patience is an improvement upon Use, Jase Rex's Another Electronic Musician debut, shouldn't be construed to mean that the first album is in any way deficient—a solid debut it was upon its release and it remains so today. But Patience is another story altogether, a spectacular suite of electronic sculpting that signifies a significant maturation of the AEM sound. Best of all, the new release sounds far less derivative than Use, as if Rex has fully absorbed his influences and taken the next, critical step towards refining his own sound. His programming skills are razor-sharp and his talent for conjuring massive vistas might be without equal (check out the humongous washes in “Overall” that seem capable of flattening everything in their path), judging by the incredibly immersive depths he fashions throughout Patience's hour-long whole.

The placid intro “Waking at Noon” weaves a multitude of sounds into a texturally rich mass that flows seamlessly into the nearly 11-minute “Within Reach” where layer upon layer accumulates, the music growing more animated and the melodies sunnier, until the reverberant beat physics of “Kinematics” drop. Similar transitions in mood follow until a zenith of sorts is reached with the 15-minute colossus “Birthing” where all of AEM's strengths coalesce in a singular composition; don't leave early though, ‘cos doing so means you'll miss the set's volcanic outro. Despite its density, Patience never feels sluggish or oppressive; instead, a regulated propulsion generated by the sonic mass pushes its material fluidly onward. Headphones listening at its finest.

November 2006