DEVONWHO: BETALOOPS

November 13th, 2017 | Album reviews

DEVONWHO
betaloops
Leaving Records

Beatmaker Devonwho‘s most recent Leaving Records release is a 42-track audio diary, a seamless series of slices from day-to-day life between 2014 and 2017 chronicling his move from San Francisco to Los Angeles. From his DSI Prophet 08 and Roland GAIA, he conjures warped and wobbly ruminations and sunset-purple moods, with streaks of shimmering G-funk portamentos and ghostly 8-bit allusions. With quotidian names like “jog,” “hikes,” and “nonsense” sprinkled between more ambiguously titled pieces like “sol5alt”, the tracklist itself implies a collection of private thoughts, feelings, and fleeting moments. betaloops is perhaps best consumed in one long continuous flow—ideally staring out a train window watching California pass—some of the more charming standout tracks are the “chlorophyll” variations, while the frontrunner for a lead single is “tradewinds_pt2.” He’s admitted none of the pieces are songs—instead, they’re vignettes, or snapshots of his developing artistic process-but the album still conveys a coherent thought process, like a precisely curated photo album where each image means something crucial and intimate to their assembler and vague—but beautiful—to the outsider.

-Christina Gubala