Philippe Mattala I Stakes LP
Philipp Matalla lives and works in the triangle of Halle, Leipzig and Berlin, in Germany. He has previously released music on labels such as Optimo Music, KANN and Kashual Plastik. His new album on Meakusma delves into some of the themes that have so far defined his work, this time increasing the tension between moments of musical harshness and flickers of introspection, ease and downright beauty. Matalla aims not for perfection, instead deploying the listener's sense of imagination. His work toys with the notion of abstraction in electronic music, often going as far cutting short melodic and other ideas, making for a confrontational stance unafraid of leaving his material in a state of difficult to define rawness, based on versatile ingredients equally rooted in rural and urban territory.
Stakes is a gorgeous and gorgeously far out album, integrating elements of psychedelic rock and dub, blending in melodic ideas that are at times abstracted, at times soothing. It is pastoral music for the digital age, where raw bursts of noise and energy dislocate and set the record straight. There is even a croonerish feel to some of its tracks, croonerish from a distorted future that is. Stakes is an experience in eclecticism and musical logic. It dissolves structures and ideas and turns musically recognisable elements on their head.