Arts Desk

On Hello Darkness, Martyn Keeps the Party Going

Dutch dubstep producer Martyn doesn't play many D.C. shows, although he lives in northern Virginia. “I don’t know why,” he told me in October. “There doesn’t seem to be much going on, for whatever reason. I’m still a happy man because I’m playing good gigs” in Boston, Los Angeles, and Chicago.

And it's not like he's hurting for exposure: After years of releasing music independently, Martyn dropped his 2011 full-length Ghost People through producer Flying Lotus' Brainfeeder imprint. That partnership seems right for Martyn; his glitchy blend of EDM meshes well with Lotus' experimental hip-hop and electro-pop experiments.

On Hello Darkness, the follow-up EP to Ghost People, Martyn doesn't stray too far from his bizarre dance aesthetic, even if the project is a little darker and more surreal than its predecessor. Gone are the bouncy synths of Ghost People; here, the soundtrack is scant and murky. On the last project, for instance, "We Are You In The Future" served as the album's energetic closer, with layered handclaps and enveloping bass lines. Conversely, the remixed version for Hello Darkness is carried by hollow drums and wistful strings.

All told, Martyn's new EP is a worthy follow-up to Martyn's previous work. With Hello Darkness, you still feel like you're in a rave, but now the drugs are taking effect.

Listen to "Hello Darkness (Radio Edit)" below:

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  • Rhymes and Reasons

    If you like hip-hop, you might like my blog, Rhymes and Reasons. It’s a series of interviews with hip-hop heads who discuss their lives and a few songs that matter to them. Pretty powerful stuff. Check’em out here:
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