NORKEN & DEER: Micro Don Juan CD Hydrogen Jukebox
Long time electronic music producers Lee Norris and Martin Hirsch come together here to provide ten tracks of happy go lucky aural plasticity.
‘Microcosm’ opens up proceedings with unobtrusive beats, warm bass and synthetic hook-lines; a simplistic yet effective opener that keeps you intrigued for what is to come, albeit a little too jolly for my tastes.
‘Shoot the Sun’ is next up with an effective array of mild electronica, but unfortunately the vocalisations of Kayela are a little too much to stomach and for me ruined a perfectly good track. Technically sound, this will appeal to a fair few folk out there, but I guess this is where the more commercial aspect of the market is met and I am firmly stuck on the other side of a checkpoint of a bridge I look at, but never cross. This is a shame because the song really builds up into something special after the vocals are left behind.
Norken & Deer really do have their heads screwed on when more focus is concentrated on the more obscure side of the genre; I do hear a lot of touches throughout the album that wouldn’t be out of place on the fantastic Warp label. ‘Migrating Deserts’ is a prime example of skittish yet simple childlike IDM and this for me is where this project truly shines; in fact, they pretty much nail down the genre along the way, just a little too infrequently.
All in all this is a solid electronic album, more focussed on the commercial aspects of the scene than anything for the true aficionado, but competent none the less.