Boomkat Product Review:
Mixed bag of lop-sided machine rhythms and expressively screwball electronics by a mutant with prior form for Opal Tapes and Tesla Tapes. Check for highlights in the hyaline fancy of ‘Leisure Village’ and the nerve-jangling harmonic fuss, ‘Jokichi’. File in your New Beta collection
“Luke Calzonetti’s personal trajectory is as unconventional as his music is. He has gone from fashion model to grindcore jazz player and from New York to Germany and back. When he’s not sending 10 songs a week, he is working on paintings that share the best qualities of his music- at the crossroads of instinctive and energetic punk moves, evocative figures all with an inescapable, irremediable oddness.
After a series of tapes on the distinguished labels of the underground (Opal Tapes, Tesla Tapes etc), the Serf Rash LP on In Paradisum was one of the label’s biggest and yet most discreet successes, gathering support from Ben UFO and The Wire which he then followed-up with the mini-album/art book Supermarché. Both featured no-wave ingrained, dubbed-out electronic vignettes that went from messy-but-classy bruitisme to eerie collages, from teenage rhythmic eruptions of “brutal tech-noir” (Noisey) to evanescent electronica meditations of “biting clarity” (Boomkat).
In what probably constitutes his most cohesive work to date (which the drawing by artist Albert Oehlen on the cover doesn’t suggest at all, consistent with Calzonetti’s ability to organize confusion), Calzonetti’s talent shines brighter than ever. The move from Germany to the mountainous NY region of the Catskills seems to have come with a renewed focus on the slow, moody and the hypnotic part of his music. The new album showcases eight strong electronic songs that showcase an artistry in shivering loops as clear as they are infectious instantly raising buried memories and secret hopes. Some of his most beautiful harmonies are showcased here with the same irresolute beauty that has been defining his work thus far.
There might not have been an electronic record in recent memory as removed from any contemporary musical reference with maybe Warp’s “Artificial Intelligence” series as an accidental touching point most notably on the gracious closing track “Fourier in Zone.” The best way to approach what makes Leisure Village so special might be in the coining by Antoine Volodine describing his own literary universe as “post-exoticism” - a world where phrases return in loops, carrying old hopes and soft paranoia. Run Dust is slowly changing your sensory reference and for a moment you’ll feel as if history has passed away.”