REVIEW: Goooose – Rudiments
For his second album released on Shanghai-based label SVBKVLT, Gooooose delivers an LP characterised by simplicity and a coalescent approach to production.
Earlier this year, when interviewed before his live performance at Iklectik, Gooooose (aka Han Han) gave a comprehensive insight into his approach to production, alongside the underpinning concepts of his latest album, Rudiments. Here, Han Han illustrated his approach to production by drawing parallels to his time spent studying chemistry, an approach which focused on breaking things down to their individual structures and experimenting with different musical components. What’s evident is his music does not conform to specific ideas or conventions; it instead attempts to produce sounds by experimenting with and replicating techniques. The word experimental has become so detached from its actual meaning in the discussion around electronic music that it is now a very vague descriptor. But in this context, it is an apt signifier. His approach is not driven by intentional aesthetics or conventions but by experimenting with differing sound techniques. Han Han’s focus is the microelements. Joining together small components to build a coalescent piece.
In Rudiments, this approach is clear from the foundations of the album’s concept. Birthed during lockdown in Shanghai, a restriction to the confinements of his own home gave Han Han an opportunistic perspective to focus on quotidian household objects. These simplistic objects provide inspiration for the album and a catalyst for his approach. Additionally, the very concept itself refers to a drumming rudiment, as highlighted by Gooooose in the album notes: “In drumming, rudiments are small and sometimes fundamental pieces that could later form longer rhythmic patterns“. The theme bypasses thinking on grander scales or focusing on the big picture. Instead, it puts smaller structures under the microscope, emphasising the role of the simple elements in music and our day-to-day lives.
The sonic results of this approach yield a stimulating canvas of sounds, cultivating an LP with a minimalist scope but a dynamic variety of tracks. The opening track, Burning Smartphones at a Sunset Desert, sets things in motion with sweeping, sombre drones. The following three tracks on the LP instantly bring the mood to exuberance with 3 tracks packed with groove-filled percussion, simple yet intricately programmed, layered smoothly over pleasant-sounding pads. The standout track of Rudiments, Turn a Roach to a Cleaning Bot, draws from his Drill and Bass influences. An energetic track that dynamically cuts between channels loaded with weighty basslines, zappy breaks and stuttering percussion that progressively builds to a euphoric crescendo of noise. Rudiments reflects the approach of building simple structures to a satisfying result, producing sounds bursting with detail without feeling too complex.
by Alec Jetha
Editor: Alex H Honey
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