oOoOO – Without Your Love
Like fellow Tri-Angle associates Balam Acab and Holy Other, the 'witch house' tag simply doesn't fit oOoOO's debut album. It is perhaps better described as ethereal R&B – vocal samples from commercial 90s pop are used as melodic flourishes and rhythmic pad-hits. His melancholic songs, sung by oOoOO himself and collaborator ML, recall Rodney Jerkins at his best – plaintive, broken-hearted R&B, rather than the shiny, aggressively sexual noughties variant.
There are three tracks to rival previous highlights such as Burnout Eyess (Stay Here, the gorgeous 3:51 am, and the title track). But he couches these lo-fi perfect-pop moments with tape experiments, spectral vocal snatches and sound-sculpture on Sirens and the claustrophobic Crossed Wires; with narcotic dub techno on Mouchette and Misunderstood. On The South, 'dirty south' hip-hop patterns are twinned with overclocked, distressed synths. The crepuscular, menacing atmospherics, contrasted with slick, polished pop hooks half-obscured by abstract noise, are breathtaking. [Bram E. Gieben]