Review ·

I put this seven-inch on the platter and geared up for some so-called IDM, which Mike Dykehouse is known for after his releases on electronic labels including Planet Mu. Rather than bleeps and squiggles, Chain Smoking is a perfect slice of dark, shoe-gazed psych pop. I heard a guitar line that faintly brought to mind My Bloody Valentine and some Creation Records releases from back in the day. A driving drum pattern anchors the whole bit, with intentionally naive lyrics: "Tear open the clear blue skies and put some life in your empty eyes." What's exciting about this seven-inch is that an electronic artist can make such a significant crossover -- and pull it off so well. Dykehouse first teased us with this with his cover of Wire's "Map Ref." on Ghostly International's excellent Idol Tryouts compilation last year. And we'll likely see much more of this on his forthcoming LP, Midrange, which has been temptingly described by Neptune Records as "a thick and gorgeous pop swell that'll put you back in Bush-1 era."

[more:] - 2004

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