Sepalcure: Fleur EP
Hotflush Recordings

Long-time fans of the work Travis Stewart and Praveen Sharma have produced under their respective Machinedrum and Praveen aliases can be forgiven for expecting their collaborative project to feature music of astonishing density and dizzying complexity. How refreshing it is to discover, then, that not only do the Brooklyn-based producers complement one another naturally, but that they refrain from overloading Fleur's four tracks with an excess of detail—perhaps each over-compensated a little bit when they started producing tracks together as a way of ensuring that their resultant sound wouldn't end up sounding overloaded. Don't be mislead, however: Fleur is hardly minimal or stripped-down but rather jam-packed with ravishing sonic colour. The title cut floats in on a gentle synthetic wave before a beautiful beat pattern enters, the punch of its bass drum offset by the crack and pop of the snare, but Sepalcure doesn't stop there as a smattering of soul vocals, handclaps, and a trippy tinkling melody spruce up the track magnificently—five magical minutes of electronic soul. “Your Love” is as good, a dynamic, club-ready swirl of charging beats and lush vocals that oozes radiance and splendour. The duo brings so much energy to the material that even the EP's brief ambient closer “Inside” is pitched at about twice the volume and intensity level of a standard ambient track. Overall, the EP's material succeeds fabulously well on purely listening grounds but also features enough beat science (on three of the four cuts) to make it hold up on the dancefloor too. Fleur is a superb follow-up to the duo's earlier debut EP Love Pressure, so superb, in fact, the only question left dangling by disc's end is when a hoped-for full-length might materialize.

March 2011