Dexter St. Jacques :: Ancient Way of Knowing (Sequencias)

Both offerings have an enviable live quality, as though done on the hoof and recorded in real time; although a couple more tracks would have been welcomed.

Dexterous St. Jacques :: The Ancient Ways of Knowing (Sequencias)

It can be difficult to shine as an electronic musician. There are the favorites, the godfathers and the flavors of the month. There are DJ’s and their followers, journalists telling you who to like and media bodies promoting their own talent. A lesser known problem can be the overshadowing effect, and few cast longer shadows than the gigantic character of Jamal Moss. And who is the larger than life Powerhouse disciple dwarfing? Noleian Reusse. Who? Well to begin he is half of Africans with Mainframes, arguably some of the best material released under the Moss banner. He’s also a cousin of the dreadlocked drum machine fanatic and business partner at Mathematics to boot. In short, Reusse is in the wings to the main on-stage action.

And what has Reusse done on his lonesome? Not much to date. A handful of 12”s, here and there, calling on Detroit and Chicago to good effect. His return to the vinyl, under the moniker Dexter St. Jacques, marks the return of New York’s Sequencias. Two tracks might seem like a light offering, but bear judgement for content.

Whispered hi hats, guttural bass and bending key changes characterize “Laamb.” The complex rhythms of Africans with Mainframes isn’t present, instead loops dig into loops as a cold tension builds. Beats have a greater presence for meandering “Temporal Understanding.” Strutting out in the garb of house, smoke and static soon fill speakers. A thick and intoxicating brew of cascading chords churn, pads peppered with fizzing percussion. Both offerings have an enviable live quality, as though done on the hoof and recorded in real time; although a couple more tracks would have been welcomed.

Some might argue that Reusse isn’t outshone by his more famous counterpart, that it’s a team effort. Be that is it may, I ain’t seeing him on the cover of Wire. Nevertheless, I’ve a feeling he doesn’t mind. Beside the gravitas of Jamal Moss is a more humble musician, one, from the sounds of Ancient Way of Knowing, who has something just as interesting to say. Here’s hoping he says it a little more often.

Ancient Way of Knowing
is available on Sequencias.

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