REVIEW album Old Subbacultcha Old Subbacultcha

Love, loss and deceit with R&B, classical and electronic vibes from Lo Fang

Old Subbacultcha

Old Subbacultcha

Impressive debut album from multi-instrumentalist, producer and previous
New Artist of the Day Lo Fang.

Blue FilmLo-Fang - Blue Film - 8/10 (Out now on 4AD)

Lo-Fang or Matthew Hemerlein is a LA-based musician and producer, classically trained in an impressive six instruments, his debut album is an example of his musical prowess having played violin, cello, bass, piano and guitar on Blue Film. His album combines classical, R&B and electronic genres with lyrics of love, loss and deceit. The opening track Look Away, brims with lush synths & intricate lyrics “I never found out how to unfold your paper cranes, your origami tragedy” it is breezy and melodic to begin but also features a guitar solo ending that takes the mood down a notch and ends with sombre strings - a sign of the double sided personally to Blue Film. The taster for this album came in the release of the dark and seductive cover  Boris originally by girl duo Boy, it's beautiful take on what was originally a simple arrangement, now a complex combination of string arrangements, guitar & electronic with the lyrics taking on a darker gender twist. When We're on Fire is a gorgeous pop infused number, using his falsetto on the end chorus to match the changing pitch of the synths, its dark disco meets synth soul.

The title track Blue Film and #88  are what James Blake would sound like if he suddenly got sexy, there is an incredible complex piano and string instrumental in the middle of the #88, many layers of audio beauty to be unravelled & dissected.  Animal Urges is exactly what it sounds like, making Blue Film quite possibly the sexiest electronic album ever. Apparently Lo-Fang decided to cover You’re the One That I Want because it “represents seduction, transformation and desperation” whatever the reasons behind it, it’s an usual choice of cover and he makes the song completely his own, dark and haunting. Lo Fang's background clearly shines through on this stunning debut album, each song is a multifaceted joy, sexy, dark and evocative. It may be too polished, too accomplished for some and not every song works, Light Years hip-hop vibes doesn’t fit as well against the electronic sheen the rest of the album projects and some of the lyrics on #88 are a little dubious. That said, it's startlingly accomplished for a beginner, debut album of brooding intensity and desire, totally irresistible.

Read our original review & sample Lo Fang's music by CLICKING HERE.