Piece written by Valerie.
Brewing on the underground European scene for some time now, Aucan are finally gearing up to make themselves heard. This trio has shared the stage with some of the several notable performers like Placebo, Tricky, Steve Aoki, Antipop, Dinosaur Jr. and so much more. They’ve even played more than 300 gigs in various venues all across Europe.
Mixing ambient dubstep with some generous helping of electronic triphop; Aucan is one of those bands that capture your attention from the moment you take a listen.
Black Rainbow is the third release from the group and features a more refined yet still very catchy hypnotic electronic dub.
Their previous releases include DNA EP (2010) which was a bit more darker compared to their first self-titled release. In Black Rainbow, the boys go deeper into electronica while infusing hip hop and trippy dub into the mix.
Opening track, Blurred (Extended Version,) features the hauntingly sweet voiced singer, Angela Kinczly. As opening track, it can be a bit misleading for fans who expect the rest of the compilation to exude a Sneaker Pimps/Portishead electronic pop after hearing this first cut. The rest of the compilation is actually much heavier and lean more on ambient dub with a rock alternative edge. If anything, the first 2 or 3 songs are the closest you’ll find electronic pop in the record, the rest is pure rocking, bass-thumping goodness.
Cuts like Storm and Embarque take you into a deeper, experimental route. These two songs also stand on opposite sides of the poles. Storm features heavy bass and a synth trippy beat while Embarque, is exclusively composed of melodic acoustic, low key stringed instruments. Both of the songs have their own feel and the clever mix of instruments, various bits as well as beats are quite easy to get lost in.
Although the entire album is a haven of pure triphop, electronica (even melodic) pop, it’s the wonderful and dark corners of the record that seals the deal for me. Away! is among my favorite tracks. When I first heard it, I immediately thought of Asian Dub Foundation during their Fortress Europe rein, only to find out in the liner notes that they indeed have a former member of ADF, Spex MC, help them out with the cut.
Overall, this is one album that’s definitely made its way to my favorites list this year. It has a little something to satisfy different music lovers’ taste, from a pop, hip hop to pure electronica and dub; Black Rainbow is certainly a record that deserves attention. Take a listen.