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R.I.P. [VINYL]

Actress Vinyl
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Price: 17.31 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Music

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Biography

Actress, aka Darren J. Cunningham, has in the last 5 years of running the Werkdiscs label set himself apart as one of the hottest A&R scouts within his field, having discovered and released some of the most widely talked about artists of the emerging bass generation, namely Disrupt, Zomby, Lukid and Starkey.
As Actress he produced the exceptional “Hazyville LP” drawing cries ... Read more in Amazon's Actress Store

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R.I.P. [VINYL] + Splazsh
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Product Features

  • Ships in Certified Frustration-Free Packaging

Product details

  • Vinyl (23 April 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Honest Jon's Records
  • ASIN: B007CQ7LH0
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 203,467 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. R.I.P. - Actress
2. Ascending - Actress
3. Holy Water - Actress
4. Marble Plexus - Actress
Disc: 2
1. Uriel's Black Harp
2. Jardin
3. Serpent
4. Shadow From Tartarus
Disc: 3
1. Tree Of Knowledge
2. Raven
3. Glint
4. Caves Of Paradise
Disc: 4
1. The Lord's Graffiti
2. IWAAD
3. N.E.W

Product Description

Product Description

Between sleep and the void lies the electronic interzone of Actress. Following the noted 2010 album Splazsh (voted number one in The Wire magazine's Top 50 Releases Of The Year). South London producer Darren Cunningham returns with a suite of electronic laments, tone structures and dreamtime rhythms which all carry his unmistakable fingerprint. R.I.P. comprises fifteen tracks painstakingly crafted by Cunningham in his London studio over recent years, with a conceptual arc taking in death, life, sleep and religion. "I'm just an instrument," Cunningham avers. R.I.P. underlines Actress's reputation as one of the most eloquent voices to emerge from the sub-bass nexus of London dance music. His intuitive and original grasp of beats, textures and rhythm puts him on a parallel path to dance music innovators such as Drexciya, T++, Aphex Twin, Burial and Basic Channel.

BBC Review

Actress’ Splazsh was one of 2010’s best albums, Darren Cunningham’s collisional production style creating extraordinary hybrids of everything from Detroit techno and jack house to 2-step garage, EBM and funk-rock. Since then there have been some excellent original 12”s as well as remixes of Kodiak, Panda Bear and Radiohead (as Thriller Houseghost, with Lukid) that further underline Cunningham’s ability to plot his signature post-genre course through the electronic music landscape.

One key to deciphering that signature is a fundamental instability, one that’s generated either by restlessness or uncertainty. Actress tracks tremble and blur as they search for a solidity their structure can’t provide. This is true even of a track as minimal and repetitious as last year’s Rainy Dub, which somehow never feels like an unvarying loop: Actress tracks always seem to be captured in the process of becoming, feeling their way in a new, strange world.

That’s clearer than ever on R.I.P., where dancefloor dynamics are more remote than on either of his previous albums. It isn’t until the ghostly Detroit techno of the fourth track, Marble Plexus, that a muddied kick drum is utilised. R.I.P. profits from the retreat: it’s an album that envelops even as it blurs and drifts, its hooks no less insistent for their subtlety.

Those hooks inhabit the crystalline trickling of Holy Water - as affecting as snd at their most skeletally soulful - as well as the tentative beauty of Uriel’s Black Harp, its stuttering strings and roaming fizzes of surface noise feeling like first steps. This mood spills into Jardin, an album highlight, which in its paradoxical blend of profound calm and inability to rest is reminiscent of Bill Evans’ Peace Piece. The way its treated piano notes are situated in relation to a rhythm built from glitch fragments and what might be car tires on wet tarmac offers a fine example of how Cunningham’s tracks are knitted together from disparate sound sources. This is the duck-billed platypus school of digital production.

R.I.P.’s structure supposedly references Milton’s Paradise Lost and the book of Genesis, but listeners might find the concept a limiting one, despite its scope. What persists here is far less epic, but also more penetrating: it’s the way Cunningham infects the algorithmic certainty of his software with an all too human tentativeness, a trait that makes the album’s title not a stock phrase, but something longed for.

--Chris Power

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Customer Reviews

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4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
Actress's latest opus is loaded with sonic trickery, understated emotion and unusual song-compositions. Here's just a few descriptions of the album's sound based on a couple of listens, and I'll probably flesh out this review on repeat listens. I highly recommend you listen too, as this is a fantastic and forward-thinking record.

'Uriel's Black Harp' has plucked strings play out beneath an insistent insect chirp and an ominous machine-groan. On repeat listens I thought I noticed a classical instrumental seep into the track near the end. 'Marble Plexus' has a 4/4 thud but there's also a skewed and weirdly alien sounding synth-melody that sounds a bit off like you're hearing it through a worm-hole. Slightly muted sleigh-bell percussion veers in towards the latter half of the song and the submerged harmonies become more grand-sounding and hymn-like.

'Shadow From Tartarus' surges along via its own bass-weight and is one of the most dubby, and indeed clubby, tracks here. 'Caves Of Paradise' is another dance-floor ready number, but once again there's an introverted majesty to its looping melody that befits listening through headphones and closing your eyes. 'IWAAD' is a beautifully pastoral and elegant piece of music. I was initially a bit shocked at how resolutely emotive it sounded in comparison to anything from his previous album 'Splazsh', and this album hits me way deeper than anything Actress has done before.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Key of Dreams 1 May 2012
By Colin Mccartney TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
This record is, I read somewhere, Darren Cunningham's dream-influenced album. And in fact it's not unlike that other (in)famous dream album Selected Ambient Works Ii in overall feel, except a lot shorter. More ambient than Actress's previous two LPs, although perhaps even darker and weirder: his usual Detroit techno influences are present, but for me there's also a touch of Cabaret Voltaire in here too.

R.I.P. cements this former West Bromwich Albion player's Premier League of techno status for the foreseeable future.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars interesting, meditative and grimy 22 Jun 2012
By Kenneth
Format:Audio CD
London based artist Actress doesn't make techno, IDM or house, instead he makes an electronic hybrid of all the aformentioned whilst throwing in a little Music concrete on top just to sweeten the honeypot. Tim Heckers ambient drone is a good reference point for the way the music on R.I.P.(Darren Cunningham's) third album sounds albeit with a litle more mischieve and tad less devastation. The synthesizers squirt and spit throughout the entirity of this, abstract sounds seem to emerge unexpectedly only to dissolve or disentegrate once they've racketed up the necessary tension in the music.

The tools he uses to achieve this effect are as expansive as his imagination, i've tried to pick out particular instruments whilst i've been listening and so far i've got synths, harps, possibly keyboards and something resembling the chirping of a cricket. the cumulative effect is unnerving without becoming completely sinsiter, i guess you could say it's psychedelic with a fair few come downs. After checking out Actress's sophomore record Splazsh when it was released two years ago, it became clear to me that he might be an artist to watch out for and he's certainly built upon the already impressve ideas that were on display with that album.

The unifromity of R.I.P. might initially feel like a paring down of the music on Splazsh however the reduction in scope actually results in an illumination of force with these sharply penetrative soundcapes enveloping your mind with repeated exsposure. For those who like their dance music to have the familiar pulse of a four to the floor beat, with plenty of snare drums and hi hat cymbals this album probably isn't really for you. If you are fans of Burial's introspective garagy dubstep or Emeralds brilliant last record however, this should definitely be investigated.
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