Boomkat Product Review:
Josiah Wise a.k.a. Serpentwithfeet makes a glorious entrance with his debut album, Blisters, which no doubt benefits from extraordinary production by The Haxan Cloak, who is basically Tri Angle’s go-to guy nowadays.
Blisters marks a return to the label’s original, modern R&B influences, and also reflects the label’s return influence over the last half decade of “avant” R&B in its role as incubator for assorted, non-binary but digitally-enhanced producers scattered across the internet.
The sweeping, oneiric title piece feels like a gospel elegy written by R Kelly and Björk, stacking up harps, widescreen synths and french horns until he’s just below the clouds, setting a sublime, decadent tone that capably carries forth thru the open-armed, floating hyper structure of Flickering, which makes the brassy orchestral arrangement of Four Ethers at its apex feel completely natural, despite its actually shocking juxtaposition with that belting gospel soul.
With Penance he swiftly introduces another key element of his musical make-up, flamenco guitars, blossoming under prostrated but soaring vocals along with a flourish of violins, before Redemption brings it back to church with an almost medieval choral arrangement ascending upwards, anchored by a spare, wooden, pew-booming beat.