Serenity in Loneliness
This new four track EP Unusable Love from El Ten Eleven and Emile Mosseri is a crisp and focused effort full of laid back organic tracks that fit very well together. El Ten Eleven have released a number of well-received projects over the past 10 years with six full length albums and a couple EPs under their belt. This is only a small taste compared to an album, but El Ten Eleven still have the ability to deliver something fresh and exciting despite the short length. Something that immediately sets this apart from their other projects is the addition of Emile Mosseri from The Dig. If you’re a fan of either El Ten Eleven or Emile Mosseri, definitely check this out.
“Unusable Love” is the first track on the EP and it sets the mood for what’s to come throughout the project. Organic guitar strings mix with a slow, brooding electronic beat and grumbling synths to create a reflective and melancholy feeling. While the lyrics convey these feelings clearly, the instrumentals also make this a very relaxing song. In contrast to the melancholy lyrics of “Unusable Love,” “I’m Right Here” has a tender touch to its lyrics. More acoustic strings blend together wonderfully with the spacey effects on the singer’s voice and the great bass line. With great singing, lyrics and production this is definitely one of the standout tracks from this album.
In contrast to the stellar second track, “She’s a Live One” falls a bit flat. The uninspired vocals at the beginning of the track really drag the energy of the song down. The dull voice of the vocalist at the beginning of the track just doesn’t match the image that the lyrics paint. On the other hand, something that this song does well is how its intensity builds on itself naturally. El Ten Eleven’s choice of instruments and production techniques really shine here. Finally “Delicate Friend” is a return to form because of its strong lead guitar melody and the great vocals brought to the table. You can really hear the strain and emotion in the singers voice which elevates this song above “She’s a Live One.”
All in all this is a successful collaboration, but there are some caveats. One annoying thing on the album is the mix on a couple of the songs. There is a grainy texture in the background that sticks out when you play certain songs loudly like in the car stereo. One other problem is that for a short project like an EP these songs are a bit too similar sounding with a vibe that doesn’t change for most of the tracks on here. It would have been great to hear more versatility from this group of artists. That being said, this is definitely a project worth checking out if you like chill, relaxing electronic music with an acoustic touch.