The Needle Drop

Dean Blunt - "Papi"

New MusicDannySpits1 Comment

As one half of the group formerly known as Hype Williams, a duo which now goes under the more self-explanatory title Dean Blunt and Inga Copeland, Dean Blunt has specialized in obtuse, abstract electronic pop, though I use the term "pop" this loosely. With the idea of pop tends to come a relateable sort of accessibility with the potential for wide appeal, but it was this fundamental characteristic which Dean and Inga seemed determined to obscure. On last year's Black is Beautiful, the pair buried their humanness under a lo-fi haze of synth-based instrumentals. Dean Blunt is not even the artist's birth name, nor is Inga Copeland her's, with their true identities having yet to meet the public light. In removing themselves from so many aspects of themselves which artists often offer in order to be connectable to their audience, Dean and Inga were essentially creating anti-pop.

With Dean Blunt's new LP, The Redeemer, however, the veil is being peeled back tentatively yet noticeably. Samples are much higher in fidelity, with lush orchestra clips giving off a convincingly cinematic feel, and much more clearly mixed vocals revealing deeper angles of Dean's persona. An especially apt example of the album's vulnerability is the first track to drop from the LP, "Papi," in which Dean's voice subtly suggests emotional longing alongside a wistfully romantic Pink Floyd sample. As Dean is gradually exposing more of his character, his statement becomes more coherent and ultimately more effective.

Look for The Redeemer via Hippos in Tanks.