Rounds’ EP ‘Falter’ kicks off like ‘The Eraser’ played if Thom Yorke had a bit more of a smile on his face. It progresses like a dubby house music record and ends up sounding like a disenfranchised Animal Collective one. As you might expect, that could sound a bit confusing, but the results is a groovy, head-bobbing EP that would be well suited to a Dutch coffee shop. Totally danceable, but very sittable too; nice and mellow.
Falter the title track and lead song is a microcosm of the EP and sets the following tracks up by putting you in the mood for more mellow, melodic electronica.
Carve is penned in a slightly different vein and is put across much more sweetly. Reverb soaks through the lead vocals and the percussion rises and falls expertly. The track never quite takes off into the majestic kick-snare combination that you would expect it to. Instead, in the last movement of the track, we get a much more careful elevation in mood as some live acoustic guitar and drums fade it. They’re arranged in a way that gives the final progression an out-of-kilter feel, with the beats falling just behind the normal time. Often, this effect can be off-putting to a listener and this is the case here. Which is a shame because this track was doing so very well.
It must be noted that both Falter and Carve are radio edits. The second half of the EP is devoted to two full length offerings, Dots and Hang, and both follow on from where the first half of the record left off. Dots brings back the blinking electronica of Falter but offers up a good deal more edge. Hang develops slowly, building on itself, before hitting the precedent set by the earlier tracks – a familiar dull throb that hits the base of your skull. Unlike the earlier tunes, the vocals take more of a back seat, only kicking in half way through the track. It’s more of the same really but there are a few nice embellishments to make it pop all the more – the beautifully subtle drop before the vocals come in being a prime example.
It’s a striking record and a very accomplished effort which is mainly down to the mood of the EP. It’s a record that would both site well in a club or a living room, on the walk to work or in an aforementioned coffee shop. Listen to it in full here.