“Electronic music’s quite inhuman already so I don’t think it needs to be made any less human by being completely ultra-perfect,” Amos Childs, one half of the twisted Bristolian duo Jabu, told Dummy in our interview with the Young Echo collective this week. That ethos rings loud and clear through this exclusive cut from the upcoming debut album from Amos and vocalist Alex Rendall – featuring rare vocals from fellow collective member Kahn – who together make music that scrapes and skirts around the very edges of what you expect music to actually be.
The crackling and menacing electronic sounds that surge through Still, un-anchored by any kind of beat, are made human in this case by Alex’s painfully open vocal. Lines like “I was nervous you’d shoot me down, but now I know I shouldn’t be so careful,” and the uneasily soaring refrains of “sometimes I feel so still” and “I’m sad and I don’t know why” blister out of the music to force you to stop trying to project any kind of sense onto what you’re hearing and to have a moment of pure connection. That’s the humanness in Jabu’s songcraft – they frustrate your musical sensibilities, instead presenting you with something like a sonic portrait of a state of mind. It invites you in, to contemplate with them for a while, in their non-ultra-perfect little world.
Listen to Still exclusively at Dummy.