AbdeCaf is the project of Floridian electronic artist Steve Vaynshtok. His music reminds me of Zoon van Snook, early Four Tet, or perhaps even some early Aphex Twin -- it is piano-based dance music with some funky electronic percussion behind it. And the great thing is, his label is giving the release away for free on their BandCamp page.
There are eight relatively short songs here in just under half an hour. Let's go over each.
The EP starts off with Themes to My Grief. Synth strings well up, then electro beats come chugging in as piano tinkles while the beats build and build. It moves at a decent pace.
On Old Flame there is a soulful vocal loop layered in. It is weighted under a massive amount of tremolo, so that it ebbs and flows between the headphones as the voice sings. Occasionally a deep voiced rapper will mutter a line or two, but mostly the song is hand-clapped electro sounds and a syncopated keyboard hit echoing. There is something sunshiny and bright, almost hot, about this track. Not hot in the sense of sexy, but hot like a mid-summers day in the South, where it is nice and sunny but after 10 minutes, you are sweating and uncomfortable. I guess Vaynshtok really channels his home state on this one.
The next track starts off with a beat that reminds me of Teardrop. The tune is called You are a Pioneer, and is a nicely mellow blend of piano and strings.
Darkness is very mellow and kind of dark, again with vocal samples that pan back and forth so fast they are distorted and kind of disorienting when heard on headphones.
Sight Unseen is a standout. It kind of reminds me of Quantazelle in that the beats kind of burble and there is a vaguely video game feel to the fast keyboards and rapid samples. Good stuff if you like that sort of thing.
AbdeCaf brings in a vocalist called Soft Lightning for Never Know. This person layers in some decent vocals while AbdeCaf makes 1980s-sounding synthpop, almost sounding like Naked Eyes for a while there. This is good stuff.
Title track Rebuild kind of throbs with that bright Berliner style of synths over hard syncopated drum samples with a funky bass synth. Here, AbdeCaf is close to Kompakt territory.
And finally we wrap things up with Regret, which is a short loop of tinkling piano and beats. It works nicely to end the EP.
So you can see that AbdeCaf manages to mix it up a bit and keep his work interesting. I am curious to see where he goes with all of this.