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Arnaud Rebotini: Someone Gave Me Religion

Arnaud Rebotini is best known for his work with Blackstrobe and for his thrilling live performances.  Following on from “Musical Components’, this record represents a stride forward into territories, scattered with intense desolate beauty.  A crisp soundtrack for lunar liftoffs, freeway night-rides and all-out raging.

A delicate magnetism draws you in from the opening moments of The First Thirteen Minutes of Love. Arpeggiated streams develop in elegiac flutters, gorgeous pervasions that scatter in blissful flux. An insistent melody imposes itself a third of the way through, the subtlest of gear-changes signal the beating heart of this piece, the tempo sustained for another eerie sequence. When everything subsides at the final crossroads, you’re reminded that electronic music has the power to be utterly serene, a calming light to bathe in, like that emitted by countrymen M83 and Vitalic. The melody waltzes back, fireflies dance in front of your eyes, coaxing you away from tranquility.

Another Time, Another Place is the trigger, a wake-up call dragging you back down to earth, into the perspiring core of hedonism. Cosmos to club in the blink of an eye, on display are vocals drenched in Moroder-esque haze. Silky continental vibes make this a tune Giorgio would be proud of, fit to grace any peak-time set or misguided party wanderings. By the time Personal Dictator gets into full swing, I’m on the brink of skulking decay, feverish percussion spits and struts around a fizzing array of vintage sounds, and doomed choral flourishes.

Someone Gave Me Religion is marked by these constant mood shifts, blink-of-an-eye pirouettes from contemplative to celebratory. Incessant touring has bestowed Rebotini with nocturnal gifts, the haunting and cavernous Echoes sitting alongside the nostalgia-tinged cabaret of Who Gonna Play This Old Machine? Steadfast adherence to old-school gear (TR-808, SH-101, TR-909, TB-303) makes for a rich, nuanced sound that anybody can possess, but few can master. Whilst the end product is imperious, the melancholic undercurrent would indicate Rebotini likes to leave some questions unanswered.  You’ll find them on a postcard in the middle of the dancefloor.