Rating: 4/5 stars
Iglooghost, also known as Irish electronic producer Seamus Malliagh, has already proven himself to be a highly unique, yet baffling enigma in the music world. His 2015 EP Chinese Nü Yr – a record which he claims is based around the story of a time-skipping, interdimensional, jelly-like worm – displayed his talent for relentless pace and energy in the field of experimental electronica.
Neō Wax Bloom adopts the same foundations of Chinese Nü Yr, then cranks the shaft into pulsing hyper-drive. Malliagh unleashes a constant pounding barrage, with track after track of faster-than-light drum and bass; earth-shattering electronic wobble and shake; soaring, yet intricate melodic hooks which sound from a variety of instruments; and grime-influenced instrumentation and vocal samples. This is a dense, lucid symphony of inexorable rhythm.
It’s hard to break down the creative process behind some of these songs. ‘Super Ink Burst’, for example, seems to take a frenetic saxophone melody as the songs staring point. Before you have a chance to take it in, Malliagh smashes in heavy dubstep-esque wobbles, pounding basslines and numerous vocal layers. All the sounds twist together in a complex mesh of noise.
Many other producers would struggle to develop any coherence in this busy soundscape, but each song comes across with the intended high energy and rhythm. The real joy of this album is this volume of sounds on display. Through the wall of noise, he allows his influences and passions bleed through. At points, you can hear what sound like Windows 95 start-up soundbites and sounds which are clearly influenced by videogames, cartoon shows and Japanese anime.
In the 40-minute runtime, Mallaigh gives you no opportunity to breathe; there’s no easy-going interlude to be seen. But clearly this was the intention – he wants to overwhelm, exhaust and overpower with the unyielding rattle of sound. This is the kind of album you should blast at full volume through your headphones, and allow yourself to be transported to a new, lustrous world of giddy excitement and awe-struck bewilderment.
Image: Tom Adcock, Brainfeeder