EP: James Welsh - The Way // Join The Dots
Mister Welsh is an accomplished man, and this EP is by no means his inaugural success. Welsh has already ‘made it big’ in a number of musical arenas; he was the guitarist in post punk band the Rise and made his dollar as big name blog-house DJ earlier this decade. However his musical direction has taken a serious and invigorating mid tempo house turn, as evidenced by this cracker of an EP which is being celebrated as a ‘hat trick of deep and sultry r’n’b jams’ by his record label.
The lead track, ‘The Way’ is absolutely great. It’s really deep but it’s also hazy; listening sends you spiralling into the lush soaked vocals and a whirlwind of gentle, throbbing polyphonic chords. Welsh’s label Join The Dots do right in emphasising the r’n’b feel to this one; it’s brimming with nonchalant swag and eases you right in to a slightly more sultry version of the average head nod.
The second track, ‘Walk’ is a coherent follow up to ‘The Way’ and ups the tempo just slightly. This track toys with Berlin-style dub-house and US garage grooves, as a flicker of melody and a darker vocal skits over a balmy, effervescent bass line.
Our favourite on the EP is the final track, ‘Hold', which goes deeper and darker than the others on the record, lulling you further into Welsh’s jungle of sound. It’s as if the preceding tracks serve to ensnare you and prepare you for Welsh’s final plans. ‘Hold’ has a cultish feel to it; the vocals circle higher and higher around the insidiously powerful and swirling bassline, ricocheting and thickening with every beat. By the end of the EP you kind of feel like you’ve been ritualistically baptised into Welsh’s musical vision, and that in our opinion is a great place to be.
Released: Nov 2012 // Label: Join The Dots