Sunday, 22nd July 2018. 8:47:03am ET


Artist: Twelve
CD Title: First Album
Label: Silber Records
Reviewer: Joshua Heinrich
Date: 11/22/03

Have you ever wondered what would happen if you put Radiohead's recent foray into experimental electronica into a blender with Red House Painters and SoulWhirlingSomewhere and hit puree? Well, whether or not you have the free time to ponder such inane questions, Twelve have decided to provide a fairly good answer with their aptly titled debut, First Album. Centered around Six.By Seven's Chris Olley, who provides the majority of the instrumental and vocal work here as well as writing and producing the album, the band is filled out by Tee Dymond and Six.By Seven drummer Chris Davis with an appearance by James Flower on the disc's final track.

Combining equal parts experimental electronica and simple yet emotive semi-acoustic numbers with a dash of droning ambience, the 8 tracks found here are diverse but also cohesive. The electronica tracks are inspired compositions containing the typical electronic bleeps, bloops, and drum loops of electronica with processed sounds and organic instrumentation. On the other side of the spectrum, the album's 3 mellow rock offerings center mostly around simple 2-chord progressions projected through acoustic guitar and bass and supplemented with beautiful subtle piano, keyboard, and organ. Usually, a two-chord mellow acoustic rock track that plods on for more than 11 minutes ends up being more than a slight exercise in patience. However, Twelve actually manage to pull it off on "Talkin About" with beautiful subtle production elements that keep the song interesting and personal. The electronica tracks also manage to evolve and remain interesting, perhaps aided by the fact that they maintain an organic vibe despite their basis in electronic elements.

Overall, First Album is a subtle, personal album that defies the sterility of many electronica and experimental offerings while placing an emphasis on strong production, organic sounds, and emotion. Made up of songs that exist in almost opposite musical spectrums, the album still manages to hold together as one work with a fairly consistent level of artistry and quality and a lo-fi acoustic indie rock vibe present even on its electronic-based tracks. In the end, Twelve's debut is a fairly compelling offering that's worth checking out.

 

Twelve website: www.atomoflife.co.uk
Silber Records: www.silbermedia.com

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