Transcending the digital and moving into the sensory, breaking through the speakers and tantalising our perceptions with intricate soundscapes that embrace and envelop rather than simply persist on one plain of reality – a space where the visual, the audial and the emotional exist in a perfected harmony…
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The music of Moody Waters remains absorbing in its own right, but there’s plenty more that the person behind it all is looking to achieve through their delicate and hyper-broad take on electronic and dance music. Previous albums have heralded impressive results, with a finely tuned balanced reached between rhythmically intriguing passages and velvet soft melodic tendencies that do much to reach into the soul and caress. There always seems to be more going on than meets the eye, and when you peak behind the curtain there persists a universe that retains a sonic identity but always feels like it is speaking to us on multiple plains, in multiple methods of conversation. This encourages the listener to dig deep and keep anchored within the spirit of the music, as fleeting images float by in all manner of representations. The blend of genres and the way in which these blends are formulated is impressive to say the least, with flavoursome House, rolling minimal Tech, engrossing Ambient and substantial yet softly treading IDM all included into the mix. The mysteriousness behind the artist only adds to the allure, the environments being crafted only helping to craft a deep connection between the music, the creator and the listener, and to meander through is to experience electronic music at its most honest, its most tender and its most pleasurable.
Previous efforts as mentioned do much to paint a scene, with records like 2021’s ‘Suspending Disbelief’ doing much to paint a picture that whispers a thousand words. Features on imprints such as We Going Deep, MKRoom, EMI and Lobster Theremin have all showcased further flavours that persist within the Moody universe, and and helped to populate the audial universe with meaningful neurones and memories. Waters frequently collaborates with other artists, either on tracks themselves or in the form of invitations to remix, which only adds further to the palette of sounds and the intrigue in which we place upon the music.
And now we arrive at the latest effort, which takes all we have mentioned before and provides the fullest glimpse yet into the land that Waters has cultivated these past few years. The title of the LP, ‘Three’, alludes to the trio of formats in which the record will be released under, which include Stereo, Dolby Amos and NFT, with these elements working alongside each other to provide the most compelling Waters experience yet. The music found within suits this triangle of medium very well indeed, the foundations of which are always deftly crafted but which feature an incredible array of sounds and styles, with gradual evolutions featuring across the board to really eek out a path for the listener to follow. Tunes such as ‘Blue Cars Go Away’ help to paint a picture of a truly grand yet intimate scale, with some moments to cherish along the way. ‘Music’ and ‘Tantra’ both retain a chuggy and evolving sound design, a pleasant pairing of melody and rhythm that contains a bountiful level of depth and feel. Not to be outdone, there are a couple of outstandingly quiet moments to be found within the cuts ‘Dub Ibixa’ and ‘Rollin’ (which features Ylva Falk), with these showcasing Water’s understanding of layering within harmonies and emotional outlines. These longer cuts are interspersed with some inspired soundbites, which include the likes of ‘axiom’, ’656f6c6863’, ‘Vegetable Law’ and ‘You and Me’, with each cut slicing through the establishing narrative with meaning and presence. ‘Flashback’, which features the Pleiadian Sisters, and ‘Orbiter’ provide a bit of bite towards the end of the record, with heavy set beats giving proceedings that late night early morning kind of transition. Last, but not least, are the three tracks which are accompanied by animated NFTs – ‘Arrows of Time’ (which features B’licious), ‘Skip and Detail’ and ‘Snowball’ (which features the Chameleon Collective). To witness the music alongside the art, which varies greatly depending on the mood, is like seeing poetry in motion, a beautiful collide of visual urgency and audial rhythms which sing from the same song sheet. Context is provided not only to these tracks but to the album at large, and it helps us to see this as both a work of music and as a work of art.
Music exists all around us, be it on the walk to work or in the dance at 5am, but capturing that essence where all the senses are catered for is an ambitious task. Moody Waters has already demonstrated a delicacy within their music which for the previous releases has a quiet understated tone to it, but on ‘Three’ the feelings are brought very much to the foreground. Engrossing, all encompassing, emotionally charged and filled to the brim with character, this is an album that defies labels and simply asks the question – how deep do you want to go? With Waters as a guide, you should find yourself diving and floating for a long, long time – so why not take the trip? Its worth every penny.