Part audio archaeologists, part soundsystem experimentalists, Seekersinternational are impossible to define. Their music is built on sound collage, studio exploration and the minutiae of sonic subcultures, yet strives for pop connection at its soul. Ultimately, the Canadian/Filipino collective revel in the pure creative potential of sampling – in both digging up sounds and composing with them.
The four tracks that make up Seekersinternational’s ‘RunComeTest‘ EP, co-released by Bokeh Versions and No Corner, display a chilled coherence compared to the frantic Canadian jungle homage ‘RaggaPreservationSociety‘ put out on Disktopia earlier this year. The EP opener creeps into life, two vocal samples wading in and out of lo-fi synth clatter and drenched pads, orbiting around a void in the centre of the track to imply a beat rather than actually play it.
As with its comic book style cover (designed by Mystery Forms), the echo warped ambience of RunComeTest comes on like a reimagining of the Mickie “Roots” Scott and Linval Thompson produced Scientist records of the early 1980s. Like everything from the SKRS collective though, it’s been blasted through their totally distinct prism. 8-bit synth basslines, scattered beats and vocal snippets used to glue together a wobbling, mellow ecstasy.
The late Mark Fisher’s ‘Slow Cancellation of the Future’ essay laments a contemporary culture “marked by anachronism and inertia”, pointing to a stasis in music’s pursuit of the ‘future’ as a prime symptom of this. Seekersinternational of course make heavy use of the past, but theirs is not a sound paralysed by nostalgia. Sampling for them is a means to push forward, standing on what’s come before to reach for something new.
Bokeh Versions and No Corner describe RunComeTest as a ‘time capsule’, if that’s so, Seekersinternational have dug it up and busted it open. Arranging the decaying, unfamiliar artefacts into something totally their own.
RunComeTest EP is out now, order a copy from Bandcamp.