3 out of 5
Produced by: EOD (?)
An interesting half-step addition to the three EPs EOD dropped under different iconographic pseudonyms. Were I to read too much into the symbol used here, the fact that it’s a standard rectangle or square seems somewhat suggestive: the first two cuts here seem to outline two extremes the artist can play in – ambient on one end, extreme IDM shenanigans on the other – before the final two tracks settle in to EOD’s melody-centric percussion showmanship.
The opener, the ambient track is pleasant – humming tones lead to some vaguely animal-ish sounds. This is a fully committed track, not just an intro, and EODs competence with the style makes me wish we could get a whole release exploring in that vein; this single track is an immersive kick-off, but nothing particularly notable on its own. The followup is notable – its breakbeats and oddball sounds cannot be ignored – but it’s also like a cut-and-paste of every trick Bogdan Raczynski has ever used. It is damned masterful mimicry, but again, it’s an extreme; it’s like a template: look at these styles I can affect. Applied at length, that would be more noxious, but kept to these two polar-opposite tracks, it’s entertaining.
And then thereafter we get things that sound more true to the artist’s nuanced abilities: a restrained but booming percussive beat backed by a tweaked tune, and then something a bit slicker and softer, a track that might fit on a Girl / Boy era Aphex release, but given those wandering fancies at which EOD excels.
It’s a short release, and the final track doesn’t necessarily land as a concluding one – one more track could’ve rounded this out nicely – but □ is still eminently listenable, and a good “middle” release from these three EPs.