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Matthias Grübel Matters Of Stability

Bridging electronic and organic music with a multi-instrumental approach and a focus on texture, Berlin-based producer Matthias Grubel covers plenty of ground in 25 minutes.

Released: 16 May 2020
Matters Of Stability

Opener 'Neon Primavera' is a simple two-chord progression, with clattering percussive synths swooping in and out but remaining latched to its four-to-the-floor beat. Though rife with noise and hidden grit, there remains a strong melodicism, creating a sound that's equally suitable for close study or dancing.

'Atlantika' boasts a bold synth lead in dialogue with a jazz guitar lick, both of which eventually hop aboard a dark and driving beat which comes and goes. Atmospheric passages fill the gaps and tensions build to an uneasy climax. 'Electric Goodbye' feels more sultry, its pitch-shifted vocals bringing an air of mystery to its reluctant motion. Again, Grübel returns to simple harmonic motifs, lifted by strange percussion.

It's hard to listen to 'Stars Under the Snow' without thinking of Jon Hopkins, so reminiscent is the stuttering beat and bass combo and the soft piano. The chopped-up guitar sample doesn't blend as well here as it did in the opening track, but it's an enduring reminder of Grübel's multifaceted talent.

These last two tracks contain some sumptuous string arrangements, in the vein of Olafur Arnalds, which deserve more airtime.

'Sad Dream #1' in particular layers them beautifully amongst a tableau of warmth, held loosely in line by Joss Loner's melancholic singing and rhythmic breath. Unsurprisingly given the runtime, some ideas here could benefit from being explore further. Unfortunately, some of them also simply frustrate your access to some top-notch beats. However, this is an inventive spirit capable of crafting infectious atmospheres.