I never know whether to spell grey, grey or gray. Is there a difference? I mention this purely so you’ll forgive me if I spell it wrong at any point in this post, as Danny Ashenden, better know as one half of The C90s, has chosen to spell it grey in the moniker of his new solo project, Earl Grey. We’ve already heard a few of his reMixes in the months just gone, but it’s high time we turned out attention to his début EP, released next week on La Belle, which we have been rocking to in the past couple of weeks.
The EP’s titled Not Everyone’s Cup Of Tea, which may be referencing Earl Grey’s departure from The C90s upbeat Disco sound into something a bit deeper, more thoughtful and, dare I say it, a little more avant-garde. But as you know this is a departure that is right up our street, so as Danny busts out the brooding space Italo and synthesizer prog. The EP kicks off with, we would say, it’s strongest track, Through The City. A track that blends SynthWave with the mood of Moroder’s more introspective material, vocoders and analog warblings blend together with rich chords to create an imposing, yet familiar, mood that flows into Jus Clap, a track with more House in it’s DNA. Jus Clap takes an intoxicating warehouse vibe to the extreme, slowing down the Chicago vibe until it’s utterly hypnotic. Regent’s Park’s blend of Tropical percussion and live electronics is nicely intersected with the occasional B-Boy beat in a track that calls to mind the freestyle synthesizer experimentalism of the early 80s. The EP plays out with it’s most accessible, and probably the most DJ friendly, tune Pong. Pong is an undulating slice of Cosmic Disco with hints on Minimal Synth and a sprinkling of House. Delivering a sound not dissimilar to Scandinavian Nu-Disco in it’s perfect blend of the galactic, and the very human. Pong balances icy tones with quirky, playful melodies creating something for your mind and your feet. Not Everyone’s Cup Of Tea is definitely worth investigation for pretty much anyone with an interest in electronic music.
While you’re here check out Earl Grey’s new reMix for LA’s Thrillionaire, and their single of last year, Wie Gehts? (a title that can’t help but remind us of GCSE German), for more of Danny’s warm, enveloping electronics. Folding the gently vocals into the track as another instrument, this reMix wraps the listener in waves of swirling, surprising, sounds.
♫ Thrillionaire – Wie Gehts? (Earl Grey reMix)
Earl Grey’s Not Everyone Cup Of Tea EP is released 29th April.
Check out more from Earl Gray on SoundCloud.