Ross From Friends – Family Portrait
When it pushes boundaries and dips its toe further into avant-garde territory, Family Portrait can be an immersive exploration of dance music
Dance music has been ever-present in the life of Felix Clary Weatherall. His dad would produce music and expose him to hi-NRG, Italo disco and techno tunes on his turntables, constantly learning and absorbing the music that was played around him. It’s apt then that Weatherall’s debut album under the moniker Ross From Friends is called Family Portrait. It’s an album that not only draws on the vast knowledge that Weatherall’s parents had imparted to him across the years, but also synthesises those different elements into a collection that touches upon a variety of different branches of the dance music family tree.
Across its 12 tracks, Family Portrait blends together complex, layered production, filled with skittering beats and jackhammer pulses that sometimes float along with shimmering melodies. The title track provides a sweet interlude, while Back Into Space emerges from its noisy cacophony of samples to evolve into a cosmic voyage. Parallel Sequence, meanwhile, harnesses warped organic elements alongside its mechanical foundations to create something intriguing and immersive. By comparison, a couple of the more traditionally structured techno tracks can feel a little too cold and laboured, sometimes feeling longer than their actual run-time. Despite this, when it pushes boundaries and dips its toe further into avant-garde territory, Family Portrait can be an immersive exploration of dance music.
Listen to: Parallel Sequence