Jean D.L / Rutger Zuydervelt - Scramblings [Inexhaustible Editions - 2020]
Scrambling is a rather atmospheric and at points quite low-key cinematic album, which blends moody guitar scaping, minimal electronics, field recordings and subtle string elements. The release brings together Rutger Zuydervelt( Machinefabriek, solo work, Piiptsjilling) and Jean D.I- who create an inmate, yet unease, at points subtly surreal eight-track album.
The CD comes presented in a six-panel white digipak. Featured on five of these panels is a single stark, at times cryptic colour photo taking in a building, room or series of items- all of which purvey both a feeling of mystery and low key unease, which of course fit perfectly the tracks with-in.Roger Batty
The eight tracks here each run between two and eight minutes apiece- with each creating its own mood/ tone, but together they build a decidedly cryptic and mysterious record, which poses more questions than it answers. We kick off “Scrambling 1”- which finds static grain pop, snap, 'n' buzz meeting melted 'n' merged voice samples and low key string flits. As we move through the record we find the lightly reverbed 'n' bouncing blues guitar tones meet police radio snippets of “Scrambling 4”
Heading into the second half of the album we have the hazily warming ambient guitar-meets- lightly pulsing synth tones of “Scrambling 6”- which in its second half shifts in flicking book like textures, and waving melancholic guitar meets greyly psych electronics. With the album topped off in a fine uneasy-yet eerier manner with “Scrambling 8” where we find a lightly unbalancing blend of crunching footsteps and distant road sound, murky electro haze, and felty twanging blues guitar tones.
Overall Scrambling is a nicely mellow-though at points subtly surreal and unsettling record. If I was looking for a comparison, I’d say Australian project Seaworthy, who in the early 2000’s put out two rather good albums on 12k, which blended moody low key guitar work with field recordings.