julien dyne – glimpse

Julien Dyne - Glimpse coverWhile the Opensouls went from their hiphop influenced debut to a more modern soul sophmore release, their drummer Julien Dyne stunted and went a bit opposite. After his 2009 electronic soul album called “Pins & Digits” he released his more hiphop/beat influenced Glimpse on the never disappointing BBE label.


Ok that might sound like both albums are worlds apart, which they aren’t. But while Dyne still keeps his focusing-on-grooves-and-mood-minimalism fingerprint alive, there’s a really notable difference in the way it’s set up. The drums are thicker and less clean, there’s more sampling going on and the use of electronics has shifted dramatically. These changes have resulted in a groove that’s more raw, maybe even more static.


While fans of “Pins & Digits” might see this change as a bit unfortunate, it seems Julien is just going with the times by adapting a more contemporary flow that fits well with the styles of his peers in the beat-genre. Fans of contemporary alternative hiphop will also be able to relate to “Glimpse” a lot more, and the fans of his melancholic mood won’t be disappointed either.


Staggering beats and backgrounds of repeating sampled cuts are key on this release. While these elements can be a recipe for disaster, they’re toned down by grooves that never go too far out of quantizing range and overlaying multiple bar melodies. The featurings by Mara TK (of Electric Wire Hustle), Parks and Ladi6 were expected, and this time they’re accompanied by She’s So Rad and Claire Duncan. Although all artists live up to their expectations, it’s especially Duncan that shines bright on the sure to be underground hit “Candy Apple Grey”.


Compared to “Pins & Digits” the album might seem to kick off slow, but the build-up is a perfect opportunity to shed predefined notions and get acquinted with Dyne’s new less-crisp sound. The little electronic bass hits are replaced by synthy pads and the organic instruments have made way to a more upfront sampled mosaic. “Glimpse” is possible an album that’s harder to get into, but it’s well worth spending a couple of spins on. Thusfar, the New Zealand native keeps the element of surprise alive.


Get the album through the BBE shop, check out Dyne’s Soundcloud or listen to the 2 tracks below.