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King Midas Sound and Fennesz – “Waves” (Singles Going Steady)

King Midas Sound and Fennesz have joined forces for a new project called Edition 1, which will be released by Ninja Tune on September 18th.

Over a spooky Fennesz instrumental, King Midas Sound croons, “Let’s just hold each other tight.” Instead of comforting, the deep ambient sound drags listeners under the titular waves, finding that such a tight grasp leads to drowning. “Paradise” is referenced, but it’s difficult to imagine this fitting anywhere more perfectly than in a preview for a horror film, the sweet words masquerading a sinister end. — BRIAN DURICY [7/10]

The pairing of Fennesz with a vulnerably soulful vocalist worked very well on his 2013 collaboration with Autre Ne Veut, “Alive”, and it does so again here with Roger Robinson of King Midas Sound. When, toward the end of the seven-plus minute track, it becomes clear that that Robinson’s vocals, which disappear halfway through, are not actually coming back, it solidifies the notion that this collaboration is more inclined to gently challenge listeners, not cater to any expectations. Swelling and receding in turns, “Waves” is more patient and nocturnal than the albums Fennesz is perhaps best known for, and is an ambient world away from King Midas Sound tracks like “Aroo”. In a climate where every other group or musician seems to be conveniently discovering their love of pop, “Waves” is a refreshing turn. — IAN KING [7/10]

PopMatters