Boomkat Product Review:
Seriously next level cyclic drum exercises for spiritual soul automatons. There's nothing else quite like this!
Following the incendiary "Black Nationalist Sonic Weaponry", ex-American theorist and rhythm technician DeForrest Brown, Jr. offers up his loveletter to legendary African American percussionists like Max Roach, Rashied Ali, Steve Poindexter and Metro Boomin. Using an iPad and Ableton Push, Brown allows his hands to guide the course of each track, letting rhythms twist chaotically and fold into themselves, channeling years of Black musical history into music that feels both ancient and futuristic.
The backdrops for each track allow different moods to permeate the chatting hi-hats and rolling kicks and toms, sometimes comprising horn drones that reference the spiritual jazz cornerstones of Albert Ayler or John Coltrane, sometimes plasticky FM pads that remind of Underground Resistance at their most ominous and conceptual. Everything builds slowly and surely to the EP's half-hour closing track, a new version of his 'Rhythmatic Music For Speakers' piece that was aired on radio in 2019. Here, Brown does away with backdrops completely, leaving wide, empty space for drums to undulate and rhythms to transform haphazardly.
Bravy, risky and peculiarly satisfying, "Soul-Making Theodicy" is another essential chapter in Brown's rapidly growing narrative. It's soul, it's jazz, it's techno, it's trap - it's a transmission from the far future.