Essaie Pas – New Path
Essaie Pas' fifth album is a pounding concept album loosely based on Philip K. Dick's A Scanner Darkly and is well worth your time
Montreal-based electronic outfit Essaie Pas are husband and wife duo Marie Davidson and Pierre Guerineau. Their fifth album, and second on DFA Records, New Path is a pounding concept album loosely based on Philip K. Dick’s classic dystopian sci-fi novel A Scanner Darkly.
Stating its intent early on, New Path sets an uneasy course from its opening note; the deep, dark and wobbly bass of Les Aphides is unsettling, amplified further by bleeping flourishes and reverb-heavy vocal entries. The album’s lead single Futur Parlé follows, striking like a bolt of lightning, full of trippy French spoken word from Davidson and eerie synths.
The first moment of light comes midway through in the more laid-back Complet Brouillé. At just shy of four minutes it’s the shortest song on the album, which is then fiercely followed by the seven-minute-long, and most high-octane track, Les agents de stups which is chock-full of fictional handclaps, synthetic keys and a galloping bassline.
Playing with a mix of spoken word and sung lyrics in both English and French, powerful techno beats and fear-inducing soundscapes, New Path is a beautifully balanced and flowing record. Full of hard beats in all the right places, it's stitched together with a stunningly stripped-back cinematic narrative that evokes the sense you’re in your own paranoid dystopian sci-fi thriller. Maybe you are?
Listen to: Futur Parlé, Les agents du stups