Boomkat Product Review:
Cranky, angular modular exercises leaning from the laboratory to the dancefloor
“Hot on the heels of M//R’s recent ‘Forever Intended EP,’ Great Circles continues our newly launched series of digital-exclusive releases. This time, we feature Philly stalwarts and Great Circles alumni WOLF DEM, who return with a fresh pack of sideways electronics and mutated dance floor mechanics, ’Chatter From A Dying Planet.’
The project of Elena Nestico and Lars Kallich – two producers, DJs and regular fixtures in the Philly community – WOLF DEM has become synonymous with their twisted live sets, which present a continued exploration of the wantonly weird territory the duo has staked out for themselves. Reflective of their voracious musical appetites, their performances routinely encompass bass music, techno, noise, IDM and all points in between.
‘Chatter From A Dying Planet,’ however, presents WOLF DEM at their loosest and most experimental. Album opener “Humboldt Squid” sets their dub-inflected drum machines adrift in a haze of stony analog delay feedback, while “Blue-ringed Octopus” comes across as a lo-fi tribute to the insectoid rhythms that defined Autechre’s earlier work and “Circling of the Vultures” dwells in shadowy ambience. Elsewhere, the frenzied crescendo of “Exosphere Migration” brings to mind a Drexciyan fever dream and “Toxic Algae Blooms” leans hard into its radioactive dancehall aesthetic.
This is music for post-apocalyptic rituals and deserted rainforests, to be sure. Welcome to the collapse of your world.”