Coypu, featuring experimental journeyman Ben Chasny, delivers a debut LP that sounds almost narcotic, surrounding you at every turn in its sweet, heady layers.
Floating, the first full album from Coypu, sneaks up on you with its volatility. The band -- comprising Six Organs of Admittance leader Ben Chasny, as well as Paul Beauchamp, Fabrizio Modonese Palumbo, and Daniele Pagliero -- makes songs that seem to drift by at first, but then they dig in their heels. "March of the River Rats" simmers early on with few guitar chords and a rolling bass line. Soon electronics bloom outward, taking up space, and the guitars start to tumble down and tangle while a dulcimer shimmers in the background. The mix becomes almost narcotic, surrounding you in its heady layers. Much of the record works in this transfixing way, from the hard, buzzing experiments of "Wetlands" to the soft, watery tones of "Sleeping Under the Moon" to the crisp-turned-murky thundering of closer "Baltea". Floating has much more heft than its title implies, building so many of these drumless songs on the bass and other grounding elements. The result is an album that sticks with you even as its elements seem so ethereal, so interchangeable. It's an album that will both strike immediately and reward multiple patient listens. It's a welcome, and fully realized statement from a new group in experimental music, one that you have to hope has a lot more music left in it.