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23 Aug 03

Oratai - The Timpani Waves EP - Oratai Sound Salon

Reviewed by David

Our review: ****
Cat #:  ORA-001 | Released: 2002 | Format: 12"  |  Website: 

oratai.jpgAt the end of 2002, Oratai silently released their debut 12" featuring a remix by master of the deep Theo Parrish. The EP is decidedly downtempo, centered on sparse yet dense percussion and stop-start breaks. From the scattered jazz piano on Lighthouse, to the early Aphex Twin-esque ambience of Coastal Interlude, this is a work that reveals itself slowly, and will reward with repeated listens.

The "Lure of the Siren" remix if Lighthouse is a fantastic atmospheric piece. Awash in detuned synths and cymbal crashes, it finds its center within a lush melody, and crawling organs. For those who like it deep, Parrish's remix of Lighthouse is the standout track. Beginning with a stuttering kick drum, the track quickly evolves into a beautiful excursion winding through jazzy piano-progressions and nuanced synth splashes.

The EP winds down with Closet Space, an evocative piece adrift with muted chimes, and cracking claves. Listening to this track is like being in the belly of a creaking ship, lurching in the waves.

While Oratai demonstrates serious potential with his freshman release, I can only imagine that subsequent releases will become more refined. Overall, this is a very solid start for a newcomer.

After all, if Theo Parrish is remixing your first release, you're doing something right, no? -David Wolf