Barac, Voyetra EP – [NAU002] Review

Following on Kamuza EP from Cristi Cons & Vlad Caia under their SIT alias, the nascent vinyl -only imprint Naural is onto its second release: this time from local hero Barac (also of NoiDoi fame). Fans of his sensuous, trippy take on the house blueprint-see his soundcloud page- will find much to love here on this two tracker, that distils the humid atmosphere of his unreleased tracks into something more streamlined, restrained and above all: transcendental.

Voyetra kicks proceedings off with Barac laying down an atypical rickety foundation of brittle drums- dropping machine bleeps in the space between the beats- ambling along languidly till the arrival of a wavering, arpeggio sends Voyetra spiralling off into an atypically heady, blissed out state. From here on out the beats almost become incidental to the atmosphere of the track, serving only to inch it forward, while the pads are content to float free of the rhythmic restraints of the 4/4 grid- clouding the track in an iridescent haze .The effect is wonderfully disorientating, and eases the into Voyetra’s labyrinthine sonic pathways.

The B side is a genius, off kilter masterclass in repetition: swirling, incandescent machine grooves set to a subterranean beats. As Drone shows its hand pretty much from the get go, the question is how does Barac keep the listener captivated? This is where his talent as a producer and as I like to think of him, as a sound sculptor comes into play. The track’s repetition stretches out into infinity, steadily unravelling as it drags the listener deeper, and deeper into the astral hinterlands of House- invoking a trance like state. It’s a real testament to his talent, to be able to tease the listener with a track that hints at boiling over and derailing itself but instead-confident of his abilities- opts to woozily saunter its way along. Listening to it again, it’s quite astounding how he keeps the listener engaged over the track’s 10 minutes, despite the fact that very little changes after those opening minutes.

Like a lot of (dance) music that is minimalist, Voyetra manages to be utterly beguiling but it-rather maddeningly- escapes an easy one word definition of why this is the case. It’s both deliriously intricate and frustratingly simple- depending on when you listen to it and what state of mind your in. Perhaps this is because unlike a lot of artists who still use the ‘minimal’ tag it doesn’t disappear up its own arse by being overtly self referential, nor get dragged down into the mire of abstraction.
Quite simply It’s a gorgeous reminder of the blithe fun to be had with a good House record-minimal or no.

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