Taking off from Beaugars Seck’s foundational sabar drum rhythms — recorded by Sam in Dakar in February 2020 — Shackleton has constructed a trio of intricately layered, luminous, enchanted, epic excursions. The second is more dazzled and meandering, with jellied bass, insectile detail, and discombobulated jabbering; the third is more liquid, fleet of foot, and psychedelic, with a grooving b-line and funky keyboard stabs, scrambled eastern strings and hypnotic vocalese.
The harmonium in The Overwhelming Yes sounds like Nico blowing in chillily from up the desert shore. The overall mood is wondrous, twinkling with light, onwards-and-upwards; an uncanny, dubwise mix of the ancient and the futuristic. Mark Ernestus’ Version is stripped, trepidatious, mystical, and stranger still, with just a snatch of the original melody, extra distortion and delay, and crystal-clear drum sound.
Twenty minutes of startlingly original music, with Shackleton the maestro at the top of his game, and a characteristically evilous dub by Mark Ernestus. Mastered by Rashad Becker; handsomely sleeved.