On first listen PillowTalk's EP, out on Life and Death, blew through my mind like ocean air. It is a refreshing set of tracks that melds soul and jazz to tech-house. Think a more immediate Nicolas Jaar with proper lyrics and choruses and you wouldn't be far off.
Opener 'The Come Back' swings and sways with samba rhythms through the first two-minutes before showering the listener in soulful male vocals. It is remarkably simple but the funky baselines and old fashioned vocals blend into a strangely new sounding creation. Add in the synthesiser and vocal harmonies and you get a winning formula. Minimal tech soul anyone?
Even better is 'Soft', a skittering blues soul track with stark rim shots and reverb that bounces around the inside of your lonely head. It's sensual and seductive but ultimately comes off sinister, feeling like you are being talked into something. "No more wasting time, you're being soft again I know", the vocal croons, ”come out tonight, dry off your eyes, don't let it show." Melancholic, sure, but it's also got class and a rhythm and pace you can't help but move to.
Instrumental 'Long Lost Friends' is jazzier, packed with loose rhythms and taught bass it is perhaps even cooler and more sophisticated than the other two tracks. The EP also packs a couple of Life and Death remixes. The remix of 'Soft' is a drawn out version that keeps most things in tact, giving most parts of the instrumentation more room to breath and giving the enough length to fit the track into a set. ’The Come Back' gets a more significant going over, the original being further from dance floor material in the first place - expect extra reverb and some vintage house kicks.
Whilst the value of the remixes is slightly questionable it's mostly because the original material standouts so well they aren't needed. The Come Back is inventive and the three original tracks here justify your attention alone.
The Come Back EP is out on Life and Death on 20 October.