Dextro’s debut album, Consequence Music,
follows a handful of EPs released over the last couple
of years on Jumblefunk and Border Community, and proves
to be a rather enduring collection of down tempo electronica
with a nice personal touch. The solo project of Glasgow-based
multi-instrumentist Ewan Mackenzie, Dextro charts a
series of impressively crisp and warm psychedelic electronic
moments over the course of this album.
Although the press release makes a passing comparison
with fellow Scots Boards Of
Canada, this actually doesn’t do Mackenzie
much favours. Sure, the beats are lethargic, the soundscapes
are languorous and the melodies finely crafted, but
Dextro’s compositions have something of a perverse
streak running through. Behind the soft brushes of analogue
synths crawl darker and more disturbing tones and textures.
An accomplished drummer and percussionist, who also
officiates as part of experimental metal act Snowblood,
Mackenzie injects elements of live drums throughout
this record, giving his compositions more texture and
body. Although he undertakes most of the parts himself,
fellow Snowblood members David Tobin (guitar) and Graham
Young (bass) lend a helping hand on Destroy The
Future Of All Mankind and Itchy Boy respectively.
While perfectly incorporated with Mackenzie’s
electronic sections, Tobin’s contribution adds
to Destroy… wonderful shimmering hue
and ripples all the way through pianos and layered vocals.
Working from a rather eclectic, yet consistent, palette,
Ewan Mackenzie crafts here a series of delightful evocative
and cinematic pieces that appear in turn delicate and
intimate or ambitious and colourful. The general mood
of the album is however extremely coherent all the way
through and denotes great control and maturity. As Consequence
Music flies by, it continues to resound as it fades
away in the distance when Rotifer gently brings
it to a perfect close.