Raime

We Can’t Be That Far From the Beginning
RR Records

With their latest EP on their new label, RR, Raime have created an intensely distancing and alien record that sounds like a glimpse into the inner workings of a machine or monster, separate from members Joe Andrews and Tom Halstead.

We Can’t Be That Far From The Beginning rejects the labels given to Raime’s music and marks another stylistic shift for the duo. While remaining rooted in dark ambience, Raime here forget entirely about genre conventions and concepts of structure within music, with each track based purely around feel. The record is only three tracks long, yet any longer and it would be an uncomfortable listen, with the first thing you notice being the record’s uncompromisingly eerie and intrusive atmosphere.

Raime here explore their love for mixing sounds from different worlds and media: the signature restrained percussive chords and sinister basses are complemented by lo-fi, ambiguous YouTube samples, as well as sound effects that belong in horror films.

Like with their previous record of this year, this EP features no real percussion, instead the only moments of pace and rhythm in the songs come from steel drum like synths or mechanical grunts. Its best moments are when these disparate sounds that create more an ambient atmosphere come together, when the more percussive sounds take control of the seemingly naturally morphing soundscapes and create brief yet blissful moments of rhythmical finesse.

Overall, this new EP from Raime is a less immediately enjoyable release compared to their other work, but it is a far more nuanced, subdued, and provocative EP that, if released in a hundred years, would still sound otherworldly and new.

Nathan Roberts