Boomkat Product Review:
Outstanding debut of intimate, fractious, liminal jazz and avant-classical minimalism from Angela Wai Nok Hui, reflecting on formative years in Hong Kong, and her move to London, with results that work in space between Mark Fell & Rian Treanor’s collab and claire rousay’s barely there enigmas
A real one for attentive listeners, ‘Let Me Tell You Something’ is one of the uncanniest debuts we’ve heard in years. Blessed with an extraordinary, curious sound sensitivity, Angela whispers about feelings on her home city, and associated “thoughts on identity, resistance and memory” across a remarkably absorbing suite, deploying a wide and exceedingly subtle palette of near infrasonic bass, overheard conversations and phone calls, weft with sparing, rhythmelodic percussion in a way that totally messes with our perceptions of time and space.
It’s a music that hovers in the background, but is too crafty to be called ambient, and lingers in a space between late night jazz and avant classical minimalism yet not committed to either. In that sense, and thru her poetic use of diaristic sampling, it’s worthy of comparison with claire rousay’s work, although Angela reserves the right to leap forward with hypnic jerk-like gestures at times that check you’re not dozing off, which would be understandable due to her music’s hypnagogic pull. You’re probably not going to fully grasp it from samples, but take it on trust this is one to blind buy if you’re a fan of subtle surprises, and especially of the daydreaming sort explored in Mark Fell & Rian Treanor’s drowsy but lucid beauty ‘Last Exit to Chickenly’.