In Review: Dialectic – Better Than Lego EP

Dialectic’s new dub and jazz-tinged EP, Better Than Lego, just landed on our desk.

Here at indieBerlin, we were big fans of the first recordPregnancy Suits You, when it dropped in 2018. At the time, Dialectic (aka Australian producer, Patrick Sharples), described this release as “for fans of the Nintendo N64”. With its twitching, glitched sound, we were forced to agree and admire.

In the creation of this latest output, Sharples acknowledges themes of “hunting, sleep deprivation and video game final boss fights”. ‘Ghost Pig’, for example, was inspired while out hunting pigs in the producer’s native New South Wales. Implied pig-icide aside, the EP’s expected traversal across a broad range of electronic styles certainly made our tails feel tingly in all the right ways.

‘Rough Ridin”, the opener, is a jazzy, dub-influenced intro, spliced with verbal samples and a grandiose synth line.

Better Than Lego continues in the form of its predecessor. The most notable difference is the pace. ‘Rough Ridin”, the opener, is a jazzy, dub-influenced intro, spliced with verbal samples and a grandiose synth line. “Why don’t you go fast?”, the self-referential vocal urges, setting the tone for the slower speed of the following five tracks.

‘He Who Has the Gold Makes the Rules’ provides another erratic sounding combination, led by a punchy riff but splattered with experimental drumbeats. ‘Contemplate This’ showcases a rattly amalgamation of dubstep-level speed, more scattered voice sampling and a jumpy melody.

This choice increases the disconnected, cut-and-paste feel – not at all offputting, merely intriguing.

In common with Pregnancy…, but unusually for an electronic artist, Dialectic eschews the longer track time – the lengthiest here is just three and a half minutes in total. Indeed, some single tracks are longer than the whole of this EP put together. This choice increases the disconnected, cut-and-paste feel – not at all offputting, merely intriguing.

The record as a whole is a logical progression from the previous release. The result is a jagged, well-worked slice of experiemental electro that will no doubt be developed upon further in the next record.

You can listen to Better Than Lego, released on Milk Thistle Records, via Bandcamp now.

 

by Luke Davis

Luke began writing about music for his university paper while studying in England’s cold, post-industrial North. He became a regular reviewer of new releases, live shows, theatre and film, before moving to the big, grey blob of London. He has written indie and electronica reviews for indieBerlin since arriving in Berlin in 2017, while pursuing other freelance writing, editing and communications projects (and struggling to learn German). You can follow Luke here and read his recent reviews here.

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