Monday, 6 February 2012

Review: Hyperpotamus

Hyperpotamus – Delta (El Molino)
Hyperpotamus is a one-man-band and the one man is Spaniard, Jorge Ramirez-Escudero. Although such a weighted term does little to describe the wondrous nature of the music he makes, and perhaps we should make it clear from the off; he doesn’t play a battered acoustic guitar, there’s no bass drum strapped to his back and knee cymbals are notably absent.

Over recent years, regular festival attendees may have witnesses Hyperpotamus on various stages, big and small, building sets with nothing more than a microphone and a contrivance to loop his voice. Although the studio offers considerable more scope to experiment, “Delta” remains an album recorded essentially with just one mouth. A remarkable achievement considering the variety of sounds, the arrangements and sheer artistry displayed. Put simply, it’s an album full of beautifully produced pop music. Ramirez-Escudero’s singing voice is deep and resonant – not unlike Jack Bruce in his Cream days – and provides a perfect counter to the backing of harmony voices and beatbox explosions.

It’s an album I’m more than happy to recommend as a whole, though the curious should hear the outstanding opening number “Seahorse For Dragon”. It’s a grand standard bearer for the album, with its neo-tribal rhythm, perfect structure and resounding lead vocal.
Simon M.

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