Conceived as a bridge between more precision studio practice and an increasingly free-ranging sax-ed up live act, his saxophone a unifying and unique voice threaded through a set of diverse dynamic progressions.
The name Anenon first appeared on the radar with Acquiescence (2012), which so beguiled with its combo of wooze+beats (see “Twenty twenty”) your contributor picked it for his Slings the Wooze mix kick-off. Non Projects leader Brian Simon is back with a follow-up on own(ed) sub-label of Alpha Pup, launched as a platform for an elusive musical area adumbrating electronic, free jazz, ambient and folk. This is roughly where the LA-based producer takes the colorful yet introspective style patented on the aptly titled debut album Inner Hue (2012) for Sagrada. Conceived as a bridge between more precision studio practice and an increasingly free-ranging sax-ed up live act, his saxophone a unifying and unique voice threaded through a set of diverse dynamic progressions.
Sagrada shows the feel for texture and architecture evident on his previous work, building on its light-step inquiry into timbre and rhythmicity with a clearer lead from Simon’s tenor sax, out from behind the sound scenes center stage as well as in textural and processed percussive forms. “Aurora” models the music’s movement of matter with piano, lo- and hi-fi drum programming and static patina. A jittery and skittery title track, beside the ambient suspensions of “Emblem,” is keynote to the house style, as sounds from live extensions rub up with studio ruminations to make for an odd variant of intimacy cut with crowd-sourced energy. Straddling 4-on-the floor and broken beat with dexterity, beats veer from rock steady to rug-pulled-from-under feel. Throughout Simon reconfigures his sound with notable singularity, though the reverberant synths and die-cut beats of “Karma” point to affinity with SoCal pal, Tycho.
Overall, Sagrada feels like a finished photo album next to Inner Hue’s sketchbook, its production calibrated for larger scale, bigger picture, without sacrificing the lower-lit personal element that’s part of Anenon’s appeal.