RIVAL CONSOLES: Helvetica / KIASMOS/RIVAL CONSOLES: 65/Milo (Erased Tapes)


Posted on Mar 27th 2009 01:33 am

Filed in Singles/EPs | Tags: , , ,
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Rival Consoles: Helvetica

Erased Tapes 2009
04 Tracks. 12mins51secs
Format: 7”/Digital

Kiasmos/Rival Consoles: 65/Milo

Erased Tapes 2009
05 Tracks. 24mins36secs
Format: 12”/Digital

One of the most iconic type faces of our times, Helvetica celebrated its fiftieth anniversary a couple of years ago amidst a wide range of events across Europe, including the ABC123 EP by To Rococo Rot. Created in 1957 by designer Max Miedinger, Helvetica has since infiltrated just about every form of visual communication and become one of the most ubiquitous and versatile fonts, used equally successfully on public signage, record covers, advertising and art.

Versatile is an adjective that can also be applied to Ryan Lee West’s Rival Consoles, whose debut release, The Decadent EP, was published on Erased Tapes at the end of 2007. Released as a four track seven inch single and digital EP, Helvetica is a hell of an eclectic release. Building on the characteristically abstract electronica of his first EP, West speeds through the drill-influenced title track, which sounds quite like a reverential nod to Aphex Twin, and the equally hyperactive, string-laden Holste, which echoes µ-ziq’s progressive Royal Astronomy of some years back, and electro IO remix of Seventeen, the original of which appeared on The Decadent EP, to the lush piano textures of Indie Is Dead, which could have been lifted from one of fellow Erased Tapes stalwart Ólafur Arnalds’s releases.

West’s contributions to the split EP with Kiasmos show another, tidier, side to his talent. Three sleek and sturdy pieces of electro peppered with delicate touches of Detroit techno, Milo, Func and ARP are extremely elegant and addictive. West progressively builds up the tension by layering increasingly heavier grooves and sounds, from Milo’s acidified chirpy melody to Func’s denser atmosphere to the utterly exhilarating heavy electro-funk of ARP. Sharing this release with West is Kiasmos, who is no other than Icelandic classical composer Ólafur Arnalds, here moving into purely electronic territories with two slices of minimal techno. 65 is a sharp and hypnotic piece propelled by a powerful beat and deep infra bass combo which is likely to get even the strongest club walls shake to the core, while Walled’s slightly more refined rhythm section drives a very effective steel drum sample. 65/Milo finds both Ryan Lee West and Ólafur Arnalds in unusual grounds, but they both take up the challenge and deliver some fine tracks worthy of the best underground clubs around.

Helvetica: 3.9/5
65/Milo: 4.3/5

Icon: arrow Ólafur Arnalds (MySpace) | Rival Consoles (MySpace) | Erased Tapes

Filed in Singles/EPs | Tags: , , ,
Comments (3)

3 Responses to “RIVAL CONSOLES: Helvetica / KIASMOS/RIVAL CONSOLES: 65/Milo (Erased Tapes)”

  1. thomon 28 Mar 2009 at 10:41 am

    I like the Rival Consoles tracks on “65/Milo” more, although the music from Kiasmos is very different. I’m really looking forward for the whole I/O.
    I have also written a review, but in slovak language. so if there’s anybody, who understands, links are below

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