New Artist Spotlight: Restless Mosaic lives up to its name with its debut album [Video]
IDM is a capricious mistress, as is experimental EDM. Between figuring out how to make the noises in your head, the lack of almost a template, and the need for a concept to explain the craziness audiences hear, it’s only the bravest souls who struggle on such concept albums. Fortunately, Seattle-based artist Restless Mosaic has quite a concept.
The best way to understand this concept is to watch a video short story created by the artist himself, written from the perspective of a mosaic coming to life and experiencing the world for the first time. Restless Mosaic’s producer Brandon Islieb says it’s a relatable experience, so those of us stood still last year and possibly still:
Mosaics are colorful, intricate, and expressive, but they are also attached to their location. If you were a mosaic you’d be restless – you want to get up and find colors like yours. “There is still a lot to discover” captures this feeling, an important feeling like a pandemic has made the world gray and many feel trapped. It’s about finding horizons and seeing what’s around the next corner. It’s about feeling freedom for the first time. This is made possible by Lockdown, while it is Lockdown’s natural predator.
It’s a great way to look at it and look past the potential boredom of being stuck. No matter where you get stuck or for how long, you never know what’s next, and the appreciation that can come from that could be one of the best silver linings when it comes to COVID.
The music that accompanies the video is a track from the album “Tiles on Tiles”. It gets to the point of the short story written by Rebecca Christiansen and lets the reader / listener really feel the click of the anthropomorphized tiles on those that are still stuck to the ground. Again, it is a very dependable experience to have freedom while seeing those still stuck all around you.
There is still a lot to discover musically. It’s also quite a mosaic, although in some places probably much more abstract than the concepts literally described in Tiles on Tiles. Islieb is inspired by early rave artists such as Orbital, Underworld and Future Sound of London and combines a lot of experimental sound design with IDM-style house and techno tracks. Selections like the title track “Gyre” and “Foggy Drain (Saponified)” really channel this intelligent mood while they are still danceable, while others like “Desert Scorpion” and “You only want rain because you are on fire” experimentally, that you couldn’t even deign to assign them a fixed genre.
There’s still a lot to discover, it’s a real mix of styles and sounds, but the soundscape they paint together is relatable, emotional and interesting in a way that only an IDM / experimental work can be. There is no telling where Islieb will go next with this project, but rest assured it will be restless.
There is still a lot to discover on Spotify and Bandcamp.