Out later today, we are able to bring you an exclusive early listen to the fantastic new Man Without Country EP, ‘Bloods, Side A’. This is an EP soaked in an ambient electronic haze: syncopated beats, a throbbing pulse and waves of layered synths that carry producer and vocalist Ryan A. James’s delicate and haunting vocals across the surface.
The EP opens with a short instrumental that has an euphoric anthemic wall of sound, underpinned by a jagged percussion: a fitting introduction to what follows as it warps out of the speakers.
‘Savannah’ has a throbbing spinal synth bass that morphs into an arpeggiated pulsing flow, like blood coarsing through veins. James’s voice is smooth and haunting as it floats above the muscular instrumentation. The effect is something quite exhilarating as a synth solo flows over the beat.
‘Gardener in the War’ eases back on the frenetic pace as the vocals wrest the controls from the bass, and synths bubble like water in a cauldron. The lyrics are dark yet touched with humour – I was the Petri-dish for you. You’ll be a better man than me – and sung with a yearning tone.
‘Our Silence’ is cinematic and bold: showcasing the primacy of Man Without Country’s melodies and the elements of surprise that play hide and seek within each track: burst of aural pleasure peeping through the lush curtains.
‘UltraNightmare’ has a restless motion: a burbling electronic opening that starts to coalesce into a driving, haunting beat as the vocals slowly glide in.
The video for this enticing slice of electronica has a oscilloscope-like screen with the monochrome unfocussed face of James filtered behind the grains and cracks like an apparition or ghost speaking from afar: lending an air of mystery that befits the track that seems to fizzle like a computer game. Of the video, James says it was:
...made in lockdown using obsolete video processing hardware, and by sticking a camera in front of my face.
The synth riffs that circulate and arpeggiate adds to the gentle pace and dreamy tones of this track, roaming over an electronic thrum of bass and percussion that creates a dark, haunting tone that bleeds into the video:
The EP comes with two edits of ‘UltraNightmare and ‘Gardener in the War’ that create perfect reductions in the gossamer sauce of the tracks.
‘Bloods, Side A’ is a contrasting melange of dark gothic melancholia and reverberating syncopated sounds – there is a day-glo eighties vibrancy that twists and turns and is ultimately wrapped and enfolded by the golden vocals. Futuristic retro synths and celestial vocals create something distinctive and fresh. You can stream/download the EP here later today and listen now through the link below.