Lone is back, and in some respects on his eighth studio album it’s just like the good old days: beats are kicking, rhythms are rolling, and the chords are serving Second Summer Of Love realness. But this time Morgane Diet is on board as a semi-regular contributor, which occasionally sets Lone’s structures and arrangements in a different light.
Akoya is utterly drenched in reverb, Morgane’s vocals bouncing off a luscious bassline and complimented by various dubby effects (including a Smoke City sample?), while InLove2 uses the titular refrain to lend focus to the mid-tempo house groove, washed out yet centre-stage. Unfortunately the opening track is not the best advertisement of what’s to come, as Hidden By Horizons never turns its promising moments into anything noteworthy.
The more downtempo tunes embrace influences from Boards Of Canada and DJ Shadow, Echo Paths’ laidback drum break a rhythmic foil for those ubiquitous spacey pads and Undaunted pairing heavy bass with warm, sweet waves of harmony. Coming Into Being And Passing Away takes a different approach, a beatless chord sequence that gains a whole different level of poignancy through repetition, waxing and waning with phaser effects, reminiscent in both theme and musicality of Brian Eno’s An Ending (Ascent).
If bangers are what you’re after, Mouth Of God and Tree For Tree go heavy on the intense rhythms and 303 ostinatos of breakbeat and acid house respectively, with the latter building exquisitely in perhaps the best use of pacing ever heard on a Lone song. It is moments like this where a sense of spirituality and euphoria creeps in, where the true essence of rave culture is distilled perfectly.
Always Inside Your Head strikes a good balance between continuity and change, and re-establishes Lone as one to watch in the electronic scene.