November 12th, 2013 | Album reviews

Dominique Purdy

Vivid Green
Alpha Pup

Los Angeles’ very own Elvin Estela, aka Nobody is a producer whose pedigree proves beyond a doubt he is indeed somebody. His lysergic hip-hop day-trips are psychedelicate and brooding, altering time and space around them. A mainstay of the Ubiquty label, his trademark sound has been passed through the filter of such collaborators as Abstract Rude, Freestyle Fellowship, 2Mex, Busdriver and Mystic Chords of Memory. His latest collection of nuggets lives up to the namesake Vivid Green, cutting through the autumn fog that wanders around your mind and heads straight through the heart, as you knowingly nod, “This is the good shit.” Opener, “Third Charm,” trips on the minimal switch of your 808 beatbox, John Carpenter-style; tangling with the vines of memory that crawl all over. “Pentwater” falls in line with a classic Man/machine-styled collision of Kraftwerk and Afrika Bambaataa, sprinkled with Kung-Fu movie accents and Bollywood sunsets. On “Our Last Dance,” Mars Volta’s Cedric Bixler-Zavala channels his inner Styx as he croons a curtain call for last dance of the prom on Venus, creating a mood instead of destroying it. The track “Rhombus” has the strength of synth strings to build tension, predicting the good kind of bad omen; where you know what’s around the corner but are still gleefully in suspense. Flat Back overlays syncopated stand-up bass and improvises moody breakbeats to create the sound of jazz to come. “Sleeping Alone” creeps a Dawn of the Dead deep synth pulse and walks with a zombified massive attack of sultry sirens, purring a lonely night cry. “Beaches” drops guest rapper Nocando’s rhythmic rhyming in a vat of molasses and bathes it in a choral backing and dark minimal beats. The title track takes a version excursion through Boards of Canada and plows a hydroponic hidden valley of sound, rounding out an album that takes the time to look back while pushing forward past the bullshit. Trust your dealer on this one.
Eyad Karkoutly