My sum total of foreknowledge about this release is it "combines electronic music with classical elements…" And that's good. Sometimes it’s nice to go in cold to a release.
A few years ago there was an Israeli downbeat/chill series called "Life Is..." and this EP by Olekksii immediately took me to the same place, haunting piano melodies, a spacious mix, distant, forlorn emotive states and almost a sense of regret. This is a 'walking home in light rain while dusk turns to night and you examine your life' kind of release.
Overall this is a sparse, clinical record - in a good way. The melodies, harmonies, effects and even the percussion all seem to stay arm's length from you - a forced perspective from which you view the whole. Sometimes the tracks are a little brief, perhaps more vignettes than tracks - but again, it’s an EP.
There are some lovely keyboard sounds on this, with just the right amount of 'glitch' to remind you that it’s not straight classical (if you ignore the obviously NOT classical song structure). Having said that it does need more 'cello. Especially the final track 'Semitone Waltz' - the equal best track for me. I would have loved more 'cello to mimic the sub-bass towards the end of the track - But maybe that's a result of the clinical mix.
I would be very interested in hearing a full album from this person/group/whatever - with the extra time it could provide the basis for some great development in the tracks and overall theme. I like not knowing where it’s from, what the meaning is or why it exists – all too often I find myself falling down an internet tab explosion as I research an act… My ignorance in this instance helped the music evolve on its own.
So - this is a melodic, emotive and yet sparse and cold release. I like the juxtaposition of these conflicting states and think it's done well overall. If you like smooth beats on a Sunday, melancholy on a Tuesday or just something a little different then give this a spin – there are enough layers here to keep you entertained, and it’s definitely not ‘cocktail beats’. Also - excellent cover!