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ID M THEFT ABLE – A Heart Named Spooky (Download from Skot’s profile on the OK Cupid Dating Site /or/ limited cassette available from (Mang Disc))
“Love! I can’t get enough of it” says that Jay-Z fella in Kanye’s Monster (2010) and I have a feeling that this THEFT ABLE, a similar giant of a man for sure, is of the same fluffy opinion.
He’s both crooner and loomer on ‘A Heart Named Spooky’, an album of piano-led ballads (yes really) released as a download on a genuine dating site – OK Cupid.
Gosh…that’s the facts ma’am. But what about all this damn lovin’ and a kissin’?
Skot-ABLE’s world has always been fluid and this collection is as hard to pin down as cherry vape smoke. It’s as diverse as love is broad so forgive me if I skip between warm hugs and a little gentle spanking.
The drift of ‘Blue and Yellow and Different Blue’ pitches a Burberry-soft voice over rolling piano, aching like Phil Collins always wanted you to. ‘Faded Sign’ a lamentation on memory is exactly halfway to becoming a player-piano tune in a Western brothel but with the clipped diction of Human Head’s Ben Knight.
The pieces ‘My Clothes They Never Fit Right’ and ‘A Heart That’s Gasp GASPING for Blood’ could be the middle-sections from vintage THEFT ABLE jams with goof-goof-grub schlurps and snickers; super wet and inviting. It’s stretching at the very limits of understanding and attention ya’hear!
A thin drone sets the tone for ABLE to practice his keening castrato over digital rubble making ‘I’ll Bet’ a bridge of a track. The ideal entry point for THEFT-watchers I’d wager; but slippery? You bet!
But it’s ‘A Bit of Trash, An Unspilled Flower’ that makes me mist-up and blub. This is a truly handsome nonsense, as forgiving as true love and therefore as blind as a bat. Each slurp and tinkle, each howl and arpeggio takes me make to a very, very specific stolen glance; an imperceptible nod from beneath sharp dark bangs that made my heart go ‘pop-pop-popeye’ back, way back, when I was loveable. (Sigh!)
Things end on the very damn poignant ‘A Valentine Late’, one minute fifty eight seconds of pure piano, guff-less, and concentrating on fingers totally. Beautiful anxiety.
With THEF_T on voice-moan, snap-judgments and sloppers only, a clear space is marked out for percussionist FLANDRE_W on collected steel detritus and novelty plastic beaters. I’m listening out for a regular trap set but just keep getting these junk-mechanic flowcharts appearing before my eyes. So be it.
From both gentlemen the watchword is reckless speed and demonic accuracy. ‘Beats’ are dropped like clumsy spoons going all ‘schlang-schalng’ as they wobble comically to rest on their fat bellies.
Rosy-cheeked squawks rumble like a rusty tenor blowing Fela Kuti horn charts deep in The Shrine! It’s a well-mixed match; a garment woven with care for sure but also a jittering confidence that puff-shoulders are making a dramatic comeback.
The pivotal track ‘My Life in a Bush of Ghosts. New Paltz. New York. 05.20.16’ made me really go ‘youk-youk’. I imagine ENO and that Talking Heads guy spraffing on about psychedelic Africa while THEFT and FLAND almost take off at the 4.23 mark paying homage to the Yoruba spirits. The skies open wide and safari fumes vibrate of the land in game-y crescents. For fans of the real here and now – don’t despair! This track is bookended with violent furniture-moving scrapes.
A student of DOUBLE DUTCH? Check out ‘The Lodge, Chester, New York 05.21.16’ for helix-skipping rhythms and rhymes hymned perfecto!
In fact the energy doesn’t even begin to drop until the thoughtful, melancholic closer ‘553 Warren Street, New York 05.22.16’. As benefits a final artistic statement it goes in heavy on the water-filled baking tray, mournful bell ring and asthmatic goose-honks. Perfectly balanced…light and shade innit?
But…whatever the political climate it’s worth checking out IDM’s bottom drawer for any junk you might have missed. You could do worse that HINT HINT, plant your feet on Babb’s Bridge, for example NUDGE NUDGE.
This communication ends baby!