Premiere: Phondupe continues to strive with adventurous new single, Neptuno
With a string of singles throughout the last year, the Sydney-based producer focuses his eyes on his debut album, out later this year.
Australia's electronic scene has always been one step ahead of the rest. In many ways, we helped carve sounds that would later become international movements, from the experimental formation of relatively new sounds through musicians constantly pushing the boundaries and adapting to new tastes, right through to the less 'adventurous' path-definers for the lack of better descriptor, who update older sub-genres with new shadings and in the process, often find a club hit that somewhat relaunches the sound back into commercial eye.
Sydney-based musician Phondupe is most definitely someone in the earlier category. Over the last few years, the multi-hyphenate has established himself as a go-to producer amongst the depths of Australian electronica, taking inspiration from musicians like Jon Hopkins and Machinedrum - two musicians he's supported over the years, in their respective Australian tours - and uniting it with a distinctly Phondupe twist that makes it more fresh and unique; a smattering of rushing sounds and differing textures making his work an often-difficult one to pin down into a genre.
Throughout the last twelve months, we've seen this perhaps better than ever before. Across the four singles shared in this time, the musician has build a discography that seemingly never sits still for too long, pacing between different textures within electronica and its intersection with many other sounds, from the snapping percussion you'd find in some of hip-hop's more out-there adventurers, right through to the mannerisms plucked from ambience and tribal-esque footwork; two sounds that couldn't be any more dissimilar to one another, but somehow find themselves together with Phondupe's work.
His latest single, the today-premiering Neptuno, showcases this better than anything else (in our opinion, anyway). It's a sprawling near-five-minutes of rushing electronica that navigates the valleys and mountains of dance music, switching between this warped sense of ambience and these darting, Jon Hopkins-esque rushes that really present the experimental creativeness of the producer at his peak, thick with the percussion that give his sound that slight hint of early hip-hop.
It's a masterclass in contrast, in a lot of ways. Musically, Neptuno pushes and pulls between light and heavy; the softness of the single's interlude-esque moments a football field away from the spiralling crush that comes with its most climactic moments. In another way, the single - as Phondupe explains - "is a tale of being pulled in two," something he navigates through this rich aural contrast. "Sometimes you’re floating through the cosmos without a care in the world, when lightning strikes and you’re sucked back into the depths," he explains.
Neptuno is the fourth taste of Phondupe's forthcoming debut album ONYKIA, scheduled for release this August via his own AIR CON RECORDS. In the meantime, take a dive into the single below with its release today, and try not get too lost in its rushing rhythms:
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