Unpretentious and Hypnotic Electro-R&B
There is much to say about an artist that isn’t handed music, but instead finds it. In an early family setting that lacked musical expression, Will Archer absorbed sonic inspiration from the seemingly tuneless surroundings of his father’s coffee factory. The industrial rhythms and clicks drove Archer to pick up a drum kit; now the London-based producer makes music under the title Slime, where it is obvious that his obsession with percussion prevails in his R&B infused electronic music. After his first two EPs, Increases and Increases II, Slime has signed with Weird World and released Company on August 28.
Company was created over a span of two years, at a dim studio in Hackney, London. Apparently 400 tracks were written for the album, yet only 20 made the final cut, which means either the other 380 were terrible, or these tracks are the cream of the crop. It is the latter. With collaborations from artists like George Maple, Jessie Ware, and Vondelpark, and guest appearances from singer Selah Sue and rapper Jeremiah Jae, Company was bound to be a hit.
The album opens with “Thurible,” an atmospheric introduction that reflects Archer’s focus on percussion, with a consistent beat anchoring the track. At first, it seems as if the track will be fully instrumental, until echoing female vocals are heard. Even though Company is an electronically-dominated album, many different instruments are featured, including horns, guitars, cellos and piano. “Hot Dog,” a standout track that features George Maple, is an emotionally verdant R&B groove that soothes the listener with synths, cool bass and harmonious female vocals. “My Company” was put out as a single prior to the album being released, and is an eclectic example of the genre variety prevalent on the album. The song features an electronic synth phrase under sultry vocal samples, on top of the R&B bass riffs that drive the album. Tracks like “Symptoms” follow a pop outline, while “Patricia’s Stories” featuring Jeremiah Jae is an ambient stoner-rap track that incorporates classical piano.
The name Slime doesn’t do Archer’s infectious and smooth electro-R&B style justice. The tracks on Company are irresistible and haunting, as well as relaxing and hypnotic. Archer succeeded in creating an unpretentious album that breaks the mold without even trying.