Saturday, December 14th, 2019

Tinlicker ft. Run Rivers – Vanishing

Dutch dance duo brings brooding and beats.


Edward Okulicz: Ever since progressive dance musics began flourishing, it’s always seemed to worked best with big, broad emotional brushstrokes. Turns out it works well with careful, tentative ones too — Run Rivers treats the title like a mission statement. The sounds feel quaintly early ’10s in a way, which makes this a cool listen at the end of a decade.

Alfred Soto: Adequate stadium trance with portent-laden vocals. Tune in or tune out as you wish.

Nortey Dowuona: Fuzzy, sandblasted bass hovers over finger-snap drums and panting samples as loping synths loop around. Run Rivers’ drifting drone slides around and fades, while pronged synth stabs puncture pieces of the beat until it deflates. Soft, burrowing Oreo synths and ticking synth chirps with butterfly percussion flutter into the whiteness. And then all of it balloons out, black and beautiful, with ashy hisses covering it with a teak call beating out of the door.

Will Rivitz: More pop-leaning electronic music should take cues from songs like this, particularly the way its bassline drops back in at its peak. After everything crests, glassy synths frosting over and the low end’s undulating bleed fully cauterized, the big post-cut-out reveal sees the bass reinserted at much the same level as before; the only difference is the sparsity of its surroundings. It’s a perfect example of doing more with less while maintaining an acuity for hooky goodness and the dancefloor. Which is to say it reflects the song as a whole: “Vanishing” consolidates the most positive trappings of Anjunabeats’ typical bombastic excess within the understated force of progressive house’s most festival-friendly ideas about song construction (or, er, progression, I guess), every section perfectly placed after the last, nary a keyboard pluck and sweep of white noise wasted.

Iain Mew: Dark, mirror-shiny, enveloping — if ever a track sounded ready for vanishing right into, it’s this.

Will Adams: What I love about progressive house/trance is how it tends to treat The Drop. Rather than a breakdown that leads to a full-on, piston-firing pound, progressive reverses the order: the breakdown becomes as massive as possible only to pull the rug out from under you, little more than the kick and bass moving the track forward. From there the track builds slowly, returning to that peak. It creates a feeling of scale, as if you’re standing at the bottom of a canyon, amazed at its grandeur, but have just realized how small you are within it. “Vanishing” carries that wonder in its lyrics, describing the simultaneous fear and excitement that comes before surrendering to total immersion. Chris James’s vocal is appropriately delicate, leaving room for Tinlicker’s icy synths to wrap around and create a mesmerizing sonic world.

Jacob Sujin Kuppermann: By halfway through, you know what “Vanishing” does. It rises and coheres into a driving beat, an insistent synth rhythm that threatens to overwhelm the track, and then it falls back down, only to rise again. Through it all, Run Rivers’ vocal serves as a guiding light, a vaguely ethereal voice of unspecified loss. It’s the kind of sensitive EDM banger that you’ve heard time and time again. And yet, “Vanishing” pulls off the rare trick of working perfectly even if you know all of its tropes. It is compelling even when it is doing nothing new, its sonics so engrossing that I can’t help but fall into its world.

Reader average: [8] (1 vote)

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