Music coming out of Netherlands collective Black Sun Empire has morphed from the heyday of drum ‘n’ bass to modern excursions in dubstep and techstep. Micha Heyboer recently decided to take a brief break from his brothers-in-arms and record under the new nom de plume, Tinlicker. The artist delves into more relaxed strands of electronica on his debut EP, It’s My First Time Here.
In an interview with Dutch website DDance, Heyboer admitted an affinity for many forms of music and wanted to approach them outside of BSE. What’s here could be really good, given a solid commitment to polish up one sound or genre. It’s My First Time Here is a telling title for Tinlicker’s debut—Heyboer pulling punches, needing excuses in case his work didn’t blow people away. The result is a self-fulfilling prophecy.
“Under the Satellites” has the stuttering keys and soft-brush drums favored by Four Tet, although it ends up being more overt and euphoric. That mainstream feel is shared by “Shimmer,” which sounds like poptronica with dark overtones courtesy of vocalist Thomas Oliver. Propulsive mood pieces that occasionally repeat themselves (“22:22,” “Paradise”) occupy the rest of the EP. It’s My First Time Here feels like demos that should have decided the direction of a first release, instead of actually becoming the first release.