Rejoicer - Energy Dreams - LP Vinyl

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Batch, Album, Artist, Format,


Energy Dreams
12" Vinyl


Stones Throw Records' latest recruit Rejoicer arrives more as an administrative recognition of an already fully signed-up partner than a properly new discovery. Having previously collaborated with label favourites Georgia Anne Muldrow, Dudley Perkins, and Mndsgn, as well as setting up and running the Tel Aviv-based Raw Tapes label, Yuvi Havkin is a perfect fit for Peanut Butter Wolf's inclusive house of rap, funk, psych and soul. His debut for the label is an elusive collection full of humour, light and air.

Havkin talks of ‘liminal spaces between unconsciousness and waking’ as providing the sonic landscape for Energy Dreams, and though it’s tempting to cast every Israeli artist’s work as commenting on the unique experience of the residents of that country (itself something of a liminal space) it doesn’t really aid much in contextualising this record. Rejoicer is just the latest of Havkin’s projects that draw heavily on spiritual jazz, dusty beats, and funk, although in a more single-minded style than Buttering Trio - another of his projects.

Unsurprisingly for a label founder with his own broad network of like-minded musicians, collaboration lies at the heart of Energy Dreams. Pianist Nitai Hershkovitz lends wandering melodies and dissembled flourishes to ‘Lucid Intent’. Yuvi's younger brother Nomok (himself a frequent element in Raw Tapes-connected acts) adds keys. Guy Glikshtein, who as well as co-founding Raw Tapes and being a talented graphic artist himself (check out the 'Google Earth heads' on his Facebook) also contributes a video, live visuals, and probably more.

The important thing aside from all of this collaboration is that the album makes sense as a whole; that it inhabits an identifiable, if liminal, space of its own. And for the most part, it does. The Mndsgn-featuring ‘Purple T-Shirts’ could come from a Yesterday's New Quintet release - its clomping, tricksy kick and snare surrounded by gently rustling hats and sleepy synth chords. The beatless ‘Changa Cold Change’ is startlingly good. ‘Lucid Intent’ reminded me of the sweet awkwardness of Mo Kolours' overlooked debut.

In the end, for all its complexity and the beauty of its soundscapes, Energy Dreams is mostly a sunny, mischievous affair. ‘Yesterday’s Forest Magic’ in particular is a very nice jazz world song, but suffers a little from a lack of definition. When Havkin dips into more ambivalent territory, on ‘Rings Of There’ and album highlight ‘Double Astral Move’, he is at his most compelling. The latter is inflected with dusky, Four Tet-style beats and deliciously arranged synth melodies that arrive at intervals to bury the track beneath a warm fug of somnolence.
A1Cloud Of Me4:05
A2High On Star Dance3:09
A3Double Astral Move3:27
A4Yesterday's Forest Magic3:35
A5Purple T-Shirts3:17
B1Alien Sphere2:56
B2Neo Drive Knows You3:35
B3Changa Cold Change2:01
B4Lucid Intent4:37
B5Ancient Energy Search3:46
B6Rings Of There2:14