Youan‘s “Together” is just over four minutes of deep house, or perhaps it’s faster-paced cousin. No, I don’t know what niche genre that would be, and I don’t care as long as this song keeps playing. Youan is a 23 year-old producer from the UK, and seems to specialize in the rhythms and infectious vocal hooks of house. In particular, I appreciate the song’s build to a whooshing plateau instead of a sudden, sharp drop.
Rufus Du Sol (Just Rufus at the time of this recording) married two unlikely songs in this sort of cover/remix/mashup hybrid. They took the lyrics and basic melody of Foals‘ “My Number,” applied their lovable gloominess to it and laid it across “Charlotte” by Booka Shade. “Charlotte” sounds like a very capable tribute to New Order’s “Everything’s Gone Green,” to the point that I have to wonder about the intentions of the original, and whether they (Booka Shade or Rufus) skewed the song to sound that way.
I was introduced to this song by a friend of mine, who had it stuck in his head for about four days by the time he was at my house, trying (and failing) to sing the hook to me, so I could help him find the song and free up his mind. The last time this happened, it wound up a three-month project of reviewing listening history to find “Fields” by xxyyxx.
This time, fortune smiled on us. I played the first song I thought it could be. He told me I was way off. As I started off in another direction to find a song, “My Number/Charlotte” came on in the mix we were listening to. It was weird. It sounded very little like what had been coming out of his mouth, so I felt doubly lucky.
With his new album, “Invasion,” Savant unleashed a monster on the world. In the blanket genre of EDM, this kind of ambition is sadly unprecedented. Nearly unheard of. In the past year, I can only think of Porter Robinson’s “Worlds” to compare this to in terms of an artist turning away from what is popular, and what will get the most people to listen to it. Instead they resolve to utilize or focus on a concept, or central idea for their record.
I’m not going to lie, Savant’s central idea just might be ADHD. He refuses to stick to a tempo, arrangement, or genre. If you were to plot this on a musical map, it would probably wind up looking like Billy’s classic ADHD trips through a single room to get a single item on the shittiest Sunday comic of all time, Family Circus.
The entire album is available through Savant’s Bandcamp page, and is worth the three to four listens it’ll take for everything to click into place, and to help you realize it’s all part of the same project.