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India Jordan - Watch Out! EP Music Album Reviews

India Jordan - Watch Out! EP Music Album Reviews
Countering the isolation of the past year, the UK house producer draws upon classic club sounds in an EP guided by the life-giving virtues of community.

India Jordan’s warmly inventive retro house debut, For You, garnered the kind of breathless acclaim that, for many a musician, might prompt the dumping of a day job. Jordan, an equality, diversity, and inclusion consultant at King’s College, London, not only kept theirs; their follow-up sounds almost like an ode to office gigs, finding in nightlife the inspiration required to get through the day shift. If For You was a love letter to queer club kids, Watch Out! is one for working people, compressing the space from commute to clock-out into five pulse-quickening takes on classic club sounds.

It’s a bold move, coming at a time when both dancing and commuting present grave threats to human health. But Jordan is wary of submitting permanently to the sedentary lifestyle necessitated, for the moment, by COVID. They warn that the virus has imposed “the ideal lifestyle the Tories want us to have”: a world with plenty of solitary labor and no collective pleasure. Jordan instead believes in the emancipatory potential in partying, seeing it as a space for building solidarity between people pushed to the margins.

The EP opens with the alarm-clock jolt of “Only Said Enough,” an homage to vintage breakbeat rave. Over dawn-colored synths and junkyard drums, and against a looping melisma reminiscent of an old-school house diva, a voice urges, “Come on! Let’s start it!” It’s a rousing beginning, one that makes it impossible to do anything but rub the sleep from your eyes and slide into your shoes. Fittingly, the hardcore “Watch Out!,” which follows, suggests rush-hour traffic on a crowded city street. Its looped air horn evokes the wail of an emergency vehicle; its vocal sample probably isn’t a barking dog dodging into traffic, but sure sounds like it. The song moves through airy, dulcet passages of lush, layered synths and into rapid drum-and-siren melees, the sound of all hell breaking loose.

“You Can’t Expect the Cars to Stop If You Haven’t Pressed the Button” is the EP’s most stripped-down track, but also its most inventive. A relentlessly percussive, found-sound techno odyssey, it rides on a gleeful, ingenious sample of a Dublin traffic signal that has been looped into a rattling, bit-crushed drum pattern. Jordan preserves the hollow, percussive pop, which will be familiar to anyone who’s ever checked their watch at a crosswalk. But they string the sounds together, too, accordioning them out ’til they’re nearly unrecognizable. The result is thrillingly tense, like a timer on a TV game show punctuated with pew-pews from a Star Wars gun.

The audible crosswalk signals Jordan samples were developed to make life easier for visually impaired pedestrians. But they benefit everyone, adding clarity, joy, and a little music to busy urban journeys. (Recently, while I was waiting at an intersection, a mechanical voice pronounced “Wait”; I turned to my boyfriend and sang, “They don’t love you like I love you.”) There is something lovely about Jordan’s insistence that accessible pedestrian signals are “the best sound in the world!” It’s a testament to their improvisational instincts that they saw the potential for bracing music in sidewalk mundanity.

From the crush of the lunch-break sidewalk, Jordan ferries listeners on to “Feierabend”—a German word for the end of the workday. Clocking nearly 150 beats per minute, it’s the EP’s fastest track by a considerable margin, yet it floats instead of banging. The synths sound hollow, like world-weary moans, before giving way to fast, clattering cymbals and footwork toms—a disco nap, and then a party. The record finally settles into “And Groove,” a closing track that, despite the insistent drum machine, feels for all the world like the sleepy end of the night in a coffee bar, the piano plinking jazzily, a distant voice crooning dreamily. This finale is as slow and quiet as “Only Said Enough” was fast and loud. There is a fully realized concept in these five brief songs, a story told simply and well: wake, work, dance into unconsciousness; repeat.

On the cover of Jordan’s first EP, they posed for a portrait in a bathroom at East London’s Dalston Superstore, a favorite queer club. It had been a space where they felt permitted to be themself, to hook up away from prying, judgmental eyes. Now, with the Superstore and similar clubs shuttered by this virus, it’s harder than ever for queer people to find community. How comforting to think that a closeted young person—forced, at the end of their bedroom workday, to sit and sup with homophobic family—might cue up this irresistible EP and indulge in an after-hours party for one.
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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.
India Jordan - Watch Out! EP Music Album Reviews India Jordan - Watch Out! EP Music Album Reviews Reviewed by Wanni Arachchige Udara Madusanka Perera on Tuesday, May 18, 2021 Rating: 5

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