Two piece Trabajo’s focus their plunderphonic style on Indonesian Gamelan recordings for their most recent EP. Only six tracks long, Gamelan to the Love God is a very short listen, clocking in at under 14 minutes.
At first, I found myself wanting/expecting more bass drum mixed in to the tracks (especially the opener/ title track). By track three, however, I began to warm up to Trajabo’s sound. These tracks aren’t meant to be experimental hip-hop beats and rarely hold the bass-backbone those beats typically do. At times, the tracks do resemble the wonky style Flying Lotus popularized, especially when the drums kick in in the second track.
It is difficult with an album like Gamelan to the Love God to write a lot about the music. Its samples are so focused on Indonesian recordings that there isn’t much western music I know of to compare it too. That said, the loop choices in '23 Skidoo' were probably the weakest part of the EP. the following song, 'Udan Mas', is probably the strongest track. It is this track where the mix of bass, synths, and vocal samples works the best for the duo, creating an atmosphere that is almost psybient (think Sphongle, OTT).
Overall one of the better EP’s I have heard this year, and possibly the most original. If you were a fan of Onra’s Chinioseries, than I especially recommend this to you.
Listen and download (name your price) Here. Be sure to pick up one of those 7" while you are there.