There weren't a ton of electronic releases that piqued my interest in 2014. I'm not a fan of most of the commercialized crap that gets pumped to twenty-somethings in obnoxious EDM clubs, I need something with a little more substance. Then in late October came this stunner, the self titled debut album from the duo Kiasmos. Not only is it my favorite instrumental electronic release of 2014, Kiasmos comes in at #9 overall on my favorite albums of the year list.
Kiasmos is a collaboration between Olafur Arnalds, best known for a more ambient approach to electronic music, and Janus Rasmussen who leads the electro-pop project Bloodgroup. On Kiasmos, the duo combine minimal techno with Arnalds gorgeous piano and orchestral work to make a truly spectacular listening experience. This is an album you must give at least one headphone listen to before it can truly be appreciated, but the beats make it work as something you can bump in the car as well. "Lit" and "Held" are gorgeous tracks awash in strings while "Looped" starts with Arnalds' piano work before the soulful, funky groove kicks in and the album moves into danceable territory. In all, Kiasmos is eight tracks of electronic bliss, I truly heard nothing else like it in the genre in 2014.
Favorite tracks: "Held", "Lit", "Bent", "Looped"
Kiasmos was released October 27, 2014 via the Erased Tapes label.