The last few years have seen Swiss producer WILDLIFE! oscillating between the pop and avant-garde worlds, producing for Popcaan, Giggs, and Santigold while completing his MA in sound art and showing installation work across the world.
He returns to Mixpak Records with Ballads, the continuation of a WILDLIFE! series that began with Patterns (2016) and Anima (2017). Drawing from a wide array of influences, from new wave and ambient to rap and R&B, the record’s palette wavers between grimy gray-on-gray and overblown kodachrome.
Collaborators Ian Isiah and GAIKA float through almost unrecognizably on “Frontline” and “IX”, while elsewhere, heavily processed vocal samples surface from digital hiss, scuffed-up synths, and gritty drum shards.
Hazy and kaleidoscopic, Ballads blurs the lines of sonic worlds, while drawing connections between past and present, experimental and pop.