Ari Bald - Pesce
Having enjoyed a slew of sell-out releases and events that celebrate the most striking up-and-comers in the dance music scene, the third record from Cardiff-based label Haŵs movesaway from its former VA-showcase format and invites previous alumni Ari Bald into the limelight.
With a quartet of light-footed tracks that tread gracefully through the bottomless sub-genres of electronic music, Ari Bald’s homespun, Scandinavian influences pervade througheach track like a utopian summer outlasting its contract.Rearing up the project with the heavy aid of synthesisers, the “Pesce” EP is a plush, musical panorama submerged in sub-aquatic sunshine. Murmurs evolve into soulful odesthroughout the four-tracker; Ari’s playful attitude to his productions is ceaselessly evident within each verse, and the record flutters without stagnation between hybrid jams, classic sounds and intellectual deep house.
The titular opener “Pesce” is an effervescent arrangement of arpeggios and post-disco samples that skitter under the wing of an ephemeral breeze at dusk. Its harmonies ebb and abate – and just like that, it’s all over. “Club Contradictory” speaks for itself; it’s a glorious paradox of emotions that is both energetic and leisurely, like an aeronaut fixed at a high velocity but happy to throw its course onto autopilot just to enjoy the view from way up high.
Navigating back down out of the clouds to a level that skims intermittently upon a glassy lagoon of breaks, two-step and docile electro, “Sunday Wool” is a B-side preamble that swoons upon the sight of itself in the water. But with each instant there must be a successor, and as the arches of synths upsurge and disassemble themselves, “Umberto Arpeggio” reforms. The closing track is a melting pot of vintage drums, Italo jingles and classical house touches – still soaring above ground-level, but fervently pursuing a higher trajectory.
Think of that warm-hearted, sentimental state of mind that bubbles up in the most starry-eyed and transient of daydreams. The “Pesce” EP seems to expand the present; it catches those fleeting moments, holds them up to enjoy just a little while longer, before letting them go to retreat under the horizon.