Leicester synth worrier returns with third album in the Rival Consoles saga
Ryan Lee West, AKA Rival Consoles, has been on and off our radar here at thisyearinmusic for a while now. His blend of acid tinged electro-house is perfect for large nights out, or reflective nights in. West is has been busy recently writing and recording his third album Howl, released on Erased Tapes Records next month.
Lead single Howl opens with galloping beats and nice bit of bass wobble before the melody kicks in. On the surface this appears to be a simple song, but after repeated listens you find a rich tapestry of melody and refrains bubbling below the surface. There are post-dubstep flourishes too, that help bed Howl into your psyche. The downbeat breakbeats work exceedingly well juxtaposed with the faster synth loops that help give the song syncopation. The real highlight is the solo in the middle. Sounding slightly like Captain Nemo going mental at a party on the Nautilus, its over before you know what’s hit you, very much like Nemo’s attacking tactics.
The only real downside to Howl is that at times you forget you’re listening to West, as it sounds eerily similar to Dan Snaith’s Caribou project. This isn’t a bad thing, but it doesn’t sound as fresh and original as West’s earlier work. Whether the album will carry on this motif will remain to be seen, but everyone here is excited about find out.