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J-Shadow Hyperfold

Musical interpretations of stars and the cosmos offer insight on Beat Machine’s latest release from J-Shadow.

Released: 3 February 2022

Whenever sound is used as a tool to help us explore or understand scientific disciplines, it adds an extra layer to compositions that can go beyond the musical surface. This new element reveals itself in how the songs are arranged, how space is used and the intensity of the music.

'And Our Lives Were Just A Holograph', the start of J-Shadow's Hyperfold, is one such example. It rolls in and out of blissful harmonies and floating drums to sum up an EP which thankfully doesn’t attempt to do what is often too hard to do — explain the near unexplainable. But it delivers something we can listen to alongside our present understanding of astrophysics, and gives Hyperfold’s tracks another grade beyond being floor heaters guaranteed to go off in drug-fuelled raves.

Rather than getting lost in the analysis and ending up with music that's sonically interesting but void of enjoyment, there's sophistication here. 'Death Of The Multiverse' is one that you listen to waiting for what musical interjection the producer will make, while 'Exosphere' manages to exist outside the realms of breakbeat and drum'n'bass because of J-Shadow’s mission on this EP. It has a restraint and originality that allows it to tell a different story to the genres that typically fuel it.

'Mist Over Sequoia' and 'Ion Dive' follow this pattern but are creatively fun trips into outer space. 'Oxidiser', the Bandcamp exclusive on the EP, needs a mention as it's J-Shadow’s wholly idiosyncratic take on his understanding of the subject. Like the rest of the EP it is, in the producer's typical fashion, an intelligently crafted presentation of sound and purpose.