Particle Kid “Shapes” | Teaching Machine
“Micah’s new release, Shapes, is a personal series of songs written and recorded in his mobile solar-powered a/v laboratory/van, aptly named ‘Vincent Van-Gogh.’ His playful and deeply moving approach to song-writing is embodied in seven tracks, equal parts hyper-textural ventures through inner-dimensions and somber lo-fi lullabies. Shapes represents Micah’s first professional release under his pseudonym Particle Kid. -Alpha Pup Records”
Visual and sound artist Particle Kid is releasing his debut album Shapes on the imprint Brainfeeder artist Strangeloop created Teaching Machine. It’s a beautiful experience that dives into two very different sides. Highly textured and experimental with forms of composition that stretch many limitations, it also includes a joyous, personal home grown approach that makes the album a very unique statement. Micah Nelson aka Particle Kid comes from a long line of musicians who have put in a lot of work into the music community and he has technique in a multitude of instruments both electronic and acoustic that reflect this background. The joyous spirit of his father Willie Nelson is definitely heard through out Shapes.
The landscape of music is phenomenal on Shapes, revealing a misty garden of psychedelia that relies on the top end of things more so than the heart of the drum and percussions. Outside of a few moments on the album, the record is devoid of percussion. The album does encounter a lot of rhythm despite the lack of percussion. When tracing back the type of influence that can be drawn, I immediately think of the many artists who were a part of the Anticon and Mush labels when hearing the lush modern electronic psych of Particle Kid. The track selection is very interesting, beginning with an instrumental and trading back and forth between songs with vocals and those without. The music submerges into deep sonic shapes of the future and of another dimension while the songs with vocals give the music a charm that makes me think of old gypsy stories in books and summers while hanging with friends. It’s these transitions of the cosmic and earth bound realms of music that make the record as rewarding and unique as it is.
Beginning Shapes with the instrumental song “Aftertaste”, this is a heavily layered and cosmic start to the record. A synthetic tapestry of sound moves in a weaving pattern and the sonic bliss of this artists abilities takes full view. With a pair of headphones, it’s a world all its own and shows how active the music is inside of the mix. The self titled song “Shapes” is another instrumental that is highly imaginative and surreal in form. With a processed core of percussion and backwards tracking, the short lived piece drops into another dimension of existence. The building and layering of tones on this song is mind blowing. It’s the type of track that puts perspective on how much attention to detail Particle Kid put into this record. “Attics” is the second instrumental of the record and reveals a more traditional side to Particle Kid’s musings. Mandolin presents a large sense of identity to the song with lush staccato runs that push over a beautiful underside of strings. It’s the most delicate idea of the record and sets the music into a distant time.
This is a really strong debut from Particle Kid in Teaching Machine that will be pressed in a limited edition vinyl format along with cassette tape and digital formats. The oddest album of the year so far goes to Shapes from Particle Kid, definitely worth the time.
Order a copy HERE