For such an abbreviated serving, Andre Obin’s Colorwheel is so drunk with emotion and synth swells that its not-quite-nine minutes are positively exhausting. Obin has deviously fashioned his techno as a side project—he has a Boston-based ambient electro/rock act called Matters & Dunaway and took producer credit on their 2004 full-length, Hightech. On his own, though, Obin’s calculations are of the room-shaking brand, owing more to a bedroom-honed sense of dancefloor artistry rather than to an affinity for rock shows.
Colorwheel‘s energy reveals a taste for synthpop as well as for Ulrich Schnauss-styled hesitance—hard kicks back layered, wiry synth riffs on the title track while fractured vocal snippets drift to and fro in the crowded background. A short bridge on “Colorwheel” allows for Obin to dial back the track’s brawny grit and, with a few spreading chords and delay treatment, let a little sun in. His “Angel Dust” is just as inspired, but the melody (and clipped vocal bits) seems secondary to the barrage of percussion, which gets a jolt in sporadic snare rolls against the central pulse. This “side project” of driving rhythms and boiling temperatures eventually constitutes an aural overload—any LP plans from Obin should be considered a threat worth seeking cover for.
// Notes from the Road
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