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Body Meat - Year of the Orc EP Music Album Reviews

Body Meat - Year of the Orc EP Music Album Reviews
Channeling sugar-rush synths and bracing noise, the Philadelphia producer continues his quest to make pop music stranger and more head-spinning—and to test listeners’ ability to follow the twists and turns.

Christopher Taylor’s vision of pop music embraces extremes. The Philadelphia producer and songwriter has made room in his albums as Body Meat for sugar-rush synth programming and bracing noise; kaleidoscopic vocal melodies and teeth-chattering percussive contortions; ecstatic dancefloor revelations and existential despair. It’s chaotic, overwhelming stuff, which is part of the point. Taylor has said his music is deliberately meant to test the limits of pop, along with his audience’s ability to keep up with all the twists and turns. “How loose can I go with this idea?” He wondered in an interview. “And how far can I push it until people start jumping off?”
Body Meat’s Year of the Orc EP seems designed to underscore this philosophy, continuing Taylor’s push to make pop music stranger, more head-spinning, even a little uglier. Slamming together disparate genres and disjointed melodies, and ignoring assumed rules of song structure, Year of the Orc asks a lot of listeners, but there’s just enough that feels familiar to grasp onto amidst the sea of noise. Taylor is an avowed fan of trap, Timbaland’s post-millennium pop experiments, and the heart-skipping rhythms of Portuguese dance label Príncipe Discos. Tracks like “This Is Something” sound like all of these things at once, and none of them at all. Bubbly Auto-Tuned melodies burst over delirious collages of jittery samples, blistered synth lines, and overlapping, hopscotching rhythms. Listening can feel jarring, like you’ve left tracks playing in a few different browser tabs at once.

It’s fitting music for the muddled headspaces and anxiety spirals that Taylor describes. A lot of his vocals get clouded out in the haze of vocal effects and stuttery electronic experimentation, but what does poke through echoes the tumult of the production. The opening “Twigs” is impressionistic and unsettling, full of abandoned half-thoughts and elliptical mantras. Through a cloudy arrangement, Taylor murmurs about “scream[ing] at the void and the vortex,” a tone-setting thought for much of what follows. Even on the relatively optimistic-sounding “4700”—which marries yearning R&B vocals to slivered rhythmic contortions that’d sound at home on a Brooklyn flex track—Taylor sings about suffering and mortality. “This Is Something” traces spiderwebs of worry over an instrumental that sputters in unpredictable fits and starts.

There’s a lot of pain in these songs, but part of what makes Body Meat’s music so compelling is that he makes a lot of room for tranquility, too. Amid the turbulent production there’s also “Stand By,” a digital funk love song as tender and romantic as any of Brent Faiyaz’s sleepy ballads. On “Ghost,” the distorted chorale that ends the EP, Taylor sings of finding renewal in loss. “I see a new self but I breathe just the same,” he sighs.

That track features the ambient composer Laraaji, who has often preached that peace is always around us, even in the midst of turmoil. “Right where we are is a whole ocean of peace, perfection, oneness, eternity,” he said in an interview last year. That philosophy sounds paradoxically in tune with Body Meat’s music. On Year of the Orc, Taylor trudges through the chaos, echoing the absurdity of a troubled world, yet somehow he finds stillness. It’s a bold aim for a musician who purports to make pop music. He dreams big and invites you to join him in his reveries.
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About Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera

Hey, I'm Perera! I will try to give you technology reviews(mobile,gadgets,smart watch & other technology things), Automobiles, News and entertainment for built up your knowledge.
Body Meat - Year of the Orc EP Music Album Reviews Body Meat - Year of the Orc EP Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Tuesday, April 13, 2021 Rating: 5

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