7″ Sunday: Martin Eden – Worker

7” Sunday is a segment devoted entirely to 7” vinyl and the all-encompassing experience surrounding it. Although most publications cover major releases, the vinyl single is often overlooked and given nothing more than a half-hearted nod of acknowledgement. This weekly feature is a hub for 7” reviews, exploring the B-sides and rarities of artists that may often go unnoticed.

Each Sunday I will review 7” vinyl from artists who venture this extra mile to hold their singles high above the sea of digital releases. I hope to embody the spirit of vinyl while sharing some fantastic music with you, the reader. Let’s get started.

Few genres get as many scoffs and eye-rolls as IDM. The three letter acronym for Intelligent Dance Music is often written off by those unfamiliar as a secret society for arrogant electronic musicians. Aligning intelligence with a specific form of music creates a rift challenging to mend; however, once its understood IDM artists also detest the literal definition of the genre, the walls of skepticism come crashing down.

Better known as Eluvium, electronic artist Matthew Cooper is now performing under the name Martin Eden. Named after the Jack London’s 1909 Künstlerroman of the same name, Cooper himself described the new direction as one that appeals to fans of “Aphex Twin or turn of the century electronic music.” He is releasing his first single as the penultimate records of the Lefse Records series.

Blending Trentemøller’s ambience with the organic folktronica of Four Tet, Martin Eden is a consistent blend of Eluvium and exploring new grounds. The pulsating soundscape of “Worker” is counteracted with a drum machine loop reminiscent of Aphex Twin’s unforgettable “Windowlicker.” Albeit far less polyrhythmic and spectrogramic, the A-side of the single holds true to Cooper’s influences and intention.

“Mothernails (for daren. 1),” kicks things up a notch and begins with the electro-organic blend of percussion that wrapped up “Worker.” Sprinkled with whispery, distant vocals throughout, the track evokes minimalism with an undefinable urgency. It’s relaxing and exciting simultaneously, making for an incredibly dynamic experience. Martin Eden, while a stark departure from Eluvium, is a promising side project and a welcomed addition to the IDM family.

Check back next week for a look at Deap Valley’s Gonna Make My Own Money.

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