Okapi presents Love Him, a minimal, electronic sample-fest, as a turntable-heavy, cut-up homage to obscure Kyrgyzstani composer Aldo Kapi. Kapi died in 1952, so his reaction will remain unknown, though perhaps he’d have shaken a leg or two at the neo-disco of the song named after him here. For me, though, I could never find a nugget that made me want to hang in there to look for further nuance.
At first listen, the album seems like hipster gibberish, and repeated listens don’t really change that opinion. The whimsy aimed for in most of these 16 Dada-without-the-bite-or-daring tracks is only realized on the “Everything Must Change Pt.2,” “Pignottimi D Approsi,” “Bah!” and “Waiting the Deadline.” On these tracks, Okapi manages to inform his fragmentary electronic burping, Wizard of Oz-like vocals snippets and, presumably, the spare, frenetic “plundered symphonies” of Kapi himself.
But the rest of the record seems like a rehearsal for when the instruments are actually turned on, or outtakes from some esoteric music. That leaves the album feeling oddly obnoxious, which brings Love Him down. Okapi may be more insightful into the intentions of still-waiting-for-fame Aldo Kapi. I have a feeling, though, that this will not be the one that brings the gold.
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