‘Outremer’ is the debut release from London-based, West Midlands-bred producer Ebenezer. Honing his craft behind the desk, over the past few years Ebenezer (a.k.a. Chris Donald) has produced records for folk troubadours, hip hop raconteurs and post-rock doomsayers alike, as well as masterminding the atmospheric electro-pop soundscapes of Fiction Fight. ‘Outremer’ burrows deep through a lifetime of influences, surfacing at the oddest junctions of genres, creating an innovative, rolling soundscape of organic synths, cavernous drums and modern-baroque strings; a world distinctly its own.
Opening track ‘Molasses’ is a swamp of sound that lurches slowly into life, like it’s re-learning how to walk; in its closing moments it speeds to the horizon, only to discover it’s already moved. Elsewhere ‘Parakeet’ is a masterclass in build-and-release. It floats like the proverbial butterfly – a chiming melody and a wild synth line that spikes and dives with abandon – and stings like a barbed bass synth, surrounded by ever-more cacophonous drums. This is storytelling music; surreal campfire tales that subvert expectation, but still have a heart of gold.
‘Outremer’ is an ode to the experience of being lost in a foreign culture, a far-away land; the opposing forces of adventure and alienation, confusing and complementing each other. With this strange and compelling record Ebenezer is staking out a space of his own among the UK’s considerable legacy of electronic producers.