Plastic House on Base of Sky
Label: The Flenser
Dystopian doesn’t even begin to describe Plastic House on Base of Sky. Blurring the lines between '70s-inspired art rock and electronic music, the album is a desolate, Goth-stained labyrinth constructed from atmospheric synthesizers, mysteriously shifting rhythmic patterns, chilly guitars and singer Toby Driver's deep, dread-suffused baritone. Though their sound palette is intentionally limited, Kayo Dot maximize it through stunning composition work. Breaking the 10-minute mark, “All the Pain in All the Wide World” showcases the ensemble’s knack for complex arrangements and swirling, reverb-drenched ensemble interplay. “Brittle Urchin,” in contrast, is an achingly spare ballad dipped in doomed ethereality. But despite its exceptionally shadowy vision, the music also contains moments of stunning beauty, like the rippling “Rings of Earth.” It’s as if Kayo Dot knew they had to descend into the darkest, deepest caves in order to bring back the most dazzling of gems.