How did I manage to go through what was (let’s be honest) a mediocre summer in its entirety without listening to Ryan Hemsworth’s dreamland of an EP, Still Awake? The Halifax native, known mostly for his electro-trap remixes and, at times, one-dimensional hip-hop production, is showing his true self with little embellishments to distract and divert. And while I may have missed the unveiling of the EP during the summer, the dim autumn weather and mist seem much more compatible with the EP’s smooth layers of intimacy. Not to mention an additional silver lining; I waited just in time for the release of his debut LP, Guilt Trips, due October 22 with Last Gang Records.
The instrumental EP, Still Awake, has the ability to connect with you as you disconnect yourself from everything else. Dark synth rhythms and tones seem stripped bare as each song blends effortlessly with the next. And with Hemsworth’s array of a resume, each house, trance and trap production is identifiable within the EP.
Once you get past the few pretentious titles, standout tracks include ‘(｡◕‿◕｡) (or, I Want To Stare At Your Face Until I Die)’, whose stringed chords take a bit of getting used to before falling in love with the light cute melodies. ‘All of Our Thoughts Are Physical’ is a track that offers more than just sounding like sex; it sounds more like raw intimacy. Then there’s the ‘track 5 (crashed)’ , which can only be described as composers, Atticus Ross and Cliff Martinez, on an acid trip.
Look out for Guilt Trips out October 22!
Check out his website for current updates and touring info!