Listening to Galen Tipton can really feel like watching a mad scientist at work. Over plenty of totally different initiatives, the Ohio producer has tossed concepts on the wall with a zany abandon: Final yr they launched an album particularly meant to be performed straight out of your telephone audio system and into your mouth, whereas initiatives like digifae and restoration lady have dealt in various strains of whimsical, speaker-busting hyperpop. Although their different monikers have allowed Tipton to push and prod at song-based manufacturing, their solo work is the place their tinkerer’s sensibility goes to its wildest locations. Every combination sounds prefer it may combust into an enormous, multicolored cloud at any second.
Just lately, Tipton’s bleeding-edge laptop computer jams have discovered an viewers on TikTok, significantly as they’ve narrowed in on a brand new type they consult with as “mind scratch.” Taking cues from ASMR, Tipton coats the listener’s ears in microscopic digital particles that sparkle like slime suffused with iridescent beads, their largely improvised chords and melodies appearing secondarily to the fixed rush of squelching synthesis beneath. A hypercute tackle avant-garde synth music, Tipton’s items are an appropriately bite-sized accompaniment to movies pining after the candy style of frosted bouncy balls. After introducing this mode in uncooked blocks of tickling noise on final yr’s nymph tones EP, mind scratch arrives as Tipton’s full-length investigation into the sound, utilizing a extra structured method to see simply how far the putty will stretch.
Regardless of how dissonant the music will get, considered one of Tipton’s most persistently pleasant methods is spinning unwieldy chaos into luxurious shapes. The ribbiting voice that opens “mind scratch 01: the scavengers hymnal” is consistently ballooning out into notes that gained’t fairly keep in key, but Tipton is ready to create their very own skewed tonal logic. “mind scratch 07: grove of the inexperienced knight (beta scale)” balances the virtually dubsteppy bass throbbing by means of its core with a featherlight piano melody, cultivating a wierd sense of calm on a monitor that must be something however. mind scratch continually floats on this state between leisure and stimulation, its heightened sensory overload delivered with a comfortable heat.
Although a lot of mind scratch follows the cadence of a rainstick trickling in eight instructions without delay, often Tipton gives one thing virtually approaching a tune. The standout “mind scratch 09: playground myths” swells from its fizzy intro right into a racing parade of drums full with a flailing brass part, hitting a sugary stride paying homage to ’90s Shibuya-kei. However for probably the most half, the main focus rests on Tipton’s dense instrumental textures and brilliant, childlike imagery. “mind scratch 16: thawing flowers” bursts to life with flutes that flutter softly as if settling atop brilliant inexperienced lily pads, whereas “mind scratch 4.5: bootlegged elixirs” performs just like the soundtrack to a bubble bathtub slowly flooding a whole home.
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