Lithe has tensions riding high with drum-focused ‘Locals’
‘Locals’ is the first single from LITHE aka Kyle Setch’s debut EP Fervent Gum, and it’s described as abstract techno. So, it’s a series of noises that you’ll recognise, structured in a way you don’t. It’s blurring the lines between what you’d hear in a club and, well, what would score a tensions-riding-high scene in a meticulously shot thriller. It’s a track that focuses on capturing a feeling, and not one that can be easily explained. It could less be described in words than with a shared experience. A moment of waiting, undefined waiting. You don’t know when the waiting began or when it will end. You really don’t know what you’re waiting for, as every possible explanation provides a thousand more uneasy moments.
Even when Lithe’s intricate drum patterns bubble below the surface, they provide an intense tension, a lonely precipice for the listener to hang on to. ‘Locals’ maintains the feeling of being on edge throughout, with every build up merely paving the way for a more urgent tension. It’s the synths, near mechanical in precision and sound that break the tension yet allow it to up the ante. Lithe describes the imagery he sees when he hears the song as, “I have this image stuck in my head of heavy machinery rolling around a quarry. Big, dumb, dump-trucks just levelling heaps of earth with complete disregard.” The dump trucks, like mecha-mega fauna, look otherworldly in size yet down in a quarry they often look like ants. It’s this disconnect and disregard that the song focuses on – these trucks provide this necessary yet inhuman function, levelling the earth to keep an industry alive, yet the industry itself requires at all times, more.
This is a primary problem for the community of Townsville, the city that Lithe hails from – a city built on an industry that has an undefined time limit, one that must measure and evaluate the importance of natural resources while sustaining a community that depend on the industry that prices them. ‘Locals’ is obviously a very personal track, Lithe has captured through his expert knowledge of drums and their truly attention holding power a way to communicate a series of complex feelings that could never so simply be put down in words but in a powerful driving force, thundering forward into the uneasy unknown.
Lithe’s EP Feverent Gum is to be released on Enhancer Records, the relatively new label established by electronic musician Hayden Quinn (AKA NULL) and David De Thomasis of Paradise Music Festival. Enhancer Records is a Melbourne-based label, with a focus on abstract, lo-fi, and experimental works, with minimal regard to genre boundaries. The EP will be released June 27th and will be available digitally and also as a limited edition rubine red cassette (100 units), with beautiful design from the Ukrainian designer Anton Leggo. The release will be coupled with a “Lithe” sticker.