Like his genre-dodging homeboys Burial and James Blake, England’s Darren Cunningham, a.k.a. Actress, makes electronic dance music full of surface-noise nostalgia and bass-heavy, cybernetic soul. Where Burial focuses on vibe depth and Blake on dub-carved songcraft, Actress takes a more ADHD approach, jumping between ideas and emptying the pantry into his abstract LPs. The vocal shards that crowded his thrilling 2010 Splazsh are mostly gone here (as the title hints), replaced by insect-like static, clattering rhythms, tingling melodies, and reverberant space. “Jardin” conjures a lonely digital kora harp, “Serpent” a recital for cello, kick-drum, and Wii. It’s the sound of a DJ just getting started after everyone’s gone home.
Listen to ‘R.I.P.’:
• Photos: Random Notes