With three albums in as break_fold, Tim Hann‚Äôs approach to complex, yet catchy electronic music has become even more diversified. Sure, the dense production and processing alongside heavy programmed rhythms can be found throughout these eight compositions, but there seems to be an expansion to the ambient elements of his work, balancing the more aggressive and commanding moments adeptly with space and mood.
Rich, ambient synthesizer passages drift over the mix on opener "22_12_18_Pt1" but the buzzing, distorted electronics are not far away in the mix.The beats are slow and spacious, but there is just enough grime to the sound to keep it from being mundane.The understated melodies take the forefront on the following "22_12_18_Pt2," where they share the focus with prominent rhythms, sounding like a cleaner reiteration of the previous part of the song.
There is a similar sense to "Gaps_in_The_Mesh_(Remix)" (a remix of ambient artist Ten‚Äôs work) with its focus on slower tempos and rich synths as opposed to the intense production and distortion found in much of Hann‚Äôs other work.There is a more noticeable balance in the sound of "13_11_19," in which a restrained rhythm is coupled with shimmering synthesizers and otherwise less discernible rhythmic pulsations.He shifts the noisier elements into more melodic passages, with the result being a comfortable sounding work, but not a forgettable one.
I have always favored the noisier side of break_fold‚Äôs work, and that is certainly here as well.There may be some light synth pads throughout "15_11_19," but the punchy drums and dirty basslines balance out the equation exceptionally.While "29_04_18" may be a bit muted in comparison, the low volume distorted hum and idiosyncratic drum sounds give extra depth that is magnified even more with the constant changing and shifting structure.
The two concluding pieces are the one that especially stood out for me, however.The up front synth and drums of "01_07_19" are instantly engaging, and the use of synth arpeggios and other bleeping rhythmic arrangements make for a distinct and active dynamic throughout.Album closer "JP" is another complex work propelled by snappy drum machines, multiple layers, and heavily varied production.As the song goes on, Hann adds more melodic elements to flesh things out, but the final product is as singular sounding as anything break_fold has done thus far.
For his third album as break_fold, Tim Hann seemingly leans into lusher, ambient sounds more than the previous two.That is not to say that there are no heavy electronic rhythms or dense, complicated production, but there is a generally calmer sound throughout this self-titled disc.As is a general rule for me with electronic music, I favor the more dissonant, challenging works on here, but Hann demonstrates his ability to cover wide swaths of the genre‚Äôs spectrum while still leaving his unique mark on whatever he does.