Shuuush, it’s the new sound of Bristol
Vesce – pronounced ‘Vess’ – are south London duo of Raf and Dan, who presumably do have surnames, but don’t see them as relevant for what they do as artists. Just getting hold of their first names was hard enough.
Well, actually that wilful obfuscation of almost any meaningful information about the duo is part of what makes Vesce interesting, because they apply something similar to the music they make. The pair employ a process of live improvisation, sampling from those recordings and then forcing the re-assembled samples into an elaborate electronic tapestry. Soul, funk and R&B are the inputs, whether in the form of slowed-down beats, liquid synth lines that sound like they were borrowed from Prince at his most sensually laconic or vocals that carry a pang of romantic angst – even if you can’t make out a single word. Think of it as electroacoustic sound art for lovers.
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Not for nothing is their debut EP titled ‘Self Edit’. Across the duo’s four available tracks, it feels like you’re only hearing half the story; piano melodies are sprinkled liberally across ‘Zender’ and disappear just as you think you’ve worked out where they’re headed, emerging later in compressed, chopped-up or processed form. They do the same with the beats, basslines and synths, but never in a way that feels frustrating or overly clever. ‘DSCVRY’ – yes, they edit out vowels as well – is the most robust of their songs, but still sounds like you’re listening to a great song from the nightclub toilets, only for it to have finished just as you’re drying your hands..
The ‘Self Edit’ EP is out via iTunes/Spotify