It is so rare to find music that feels genuinely conscious of the listener. 99% of the time, music sounds like it was created for other, abstract reasons – pop music makes money, most rock or rap always feels like an ego parade – even a lot of “experimental” music comes off as overly esoteric, distancing the listener from an unattainable world.
Rashad Becker seems to be aware of this, and his music seems to be aware of me. Much has been written about his career leading up to this release, so let’s keep it brief – Mr. Becker, born in Syria but raised in Germany, has spent the last decades working at the illustrious Dubplates & Mastering, fleshing out and polishing records for an impressive list of electronically minded musicians. Traditional Music of Notional Species, Vol. 1 is his first full-length, out now on PAN. Split into eight themes and dances, the music within is perception distorting, thrilling, and entirely unique. Emotional, mysterious, and bewildering, Becker’s album feels constantly approachable, and worth every second of investigation. Anyone who witnessed his intense set at the recent PAN_ACT Boston will know what kind of sonic world to expect; but, really, this man is an expert of the medium of the record. Copies are only available overseas for now, but keep an eye on Forced Exposure – check out “Dances III” below.