Normally I limit myself to frowning disapprovingly at glitchy Electronica for having too many disjointed, discordant beats for my more refined tastes. Add to that the penchant for self indulgent meanderings from the producers who throw themselves into it with more than a handful of releases I come across about which all you can really say is that it’s ‘interesting’ in the tone of voice that whispers ‘crap’ beneath the half hearted compliment. Listening to The Ache though I’m finding myself a bit more amenable to the sonic awkwardness scattered throughout.
The big difference here is that of balance. Glitchy production tropes are layered amongst cleaner beats with a hint of delicacy and the beautiful tones of Natasha Kmeto herself. It genuinely does make things interesting without just being a challenge as far as listening goes. There really is something slightly different here which melds together a range of Hip Hop flavours, well managed Electronic trickery and RnB polish which goes beyond the usual ultra-smooth archetypes.
To shamelessly lift the words of another reviewer (Ned Lannamann, Portland Mercury) Natasha has ‘ a singing voice that keeps the digital zeroes and ones imbued with flesh and blood.’ – a human element which any of the many producers plying their electronic trade could take a lesson from having looked up from their screens to think for a moment. Being smart with sound, being able to experiment and fiddle with it doesn’t necessarily mean cutting out all sense of empathy and what Natasha Kmeto’s done here proves that, which is a rare and fine thing indeed.