Rrose- Please Touch
There’s a magical sort of thing that happens when you encounter dance music from a distance. The sound sort of bends out of shape, suddenly given space to sprawl over. The underbelly of bass reveals nuances usually lurking beneath layers of shimmering, crisp rhythms. Those rhythms now muddied into an amorphous throb that ripples through your body and down into the earth. It’s the sound of approaching a dancefloor at a music festival, or the sound of a mecca like Bergahin suddenly coming into focus after a pilgrimage across the city. The way the music bends across space and, in some ways, time, reveals how the inner workings of a carefully crafted mechanism designed to move your feet to the rhythm of your heartbeat is full of oracular vibrations and cosmic hums. It’s from these hums that multidisciplinary artist and producer Rrose takes inspiration for Please Touch, their latest LP that sees them fuse the cavernous techno of their early work with their newer experiments in submerged drone and avant-garde ambient.
In sewing these two parts of their craft together, Rrose lands on something that shifts between the propulsive and the vaporous, amorphous swells of vibrations that conceal techno’s confrontational thud and softens its gaze toward tectonic rumbles. Rib Cage sounds like a sunken basement rave emanating from beneath the earth, and though Spore threatens to break the surface, it remains hidden from plain sight. The Illuminating Glass grows from a damp kick swathed in foggy synth, its throb met with hi-hats in response. As it oozes, the track refracts in a myriad of directions, percussive elements spreading like mycelium. It teeters on chaos, but remains submerged and dense, culminating in all encompassing drones. It speaks toward Rrose’s specific approach to sound design here; their sounds germinate from “seed sounds… fed through elaborate webs of interrelated audio processing,” so that each element arises as a consequence of the other.
It’s an approach that plants Please Touch in a monolithic, chthonic realm, a buried mesh of pulsating vibrations and flickering textures. In extracting the atoms of techno’s sound, Please Touch speaks toward the corporeal by way of the intangible, plunging into the very essence of sound itself. In this sense, Rrose defies convention in more ways than one. They play with the physics of techno not just structurally, but mechanically too. If techno is designed to move bodies as a single mass, then Rrose’s response is to explore what happens inside those bodies as they move. With its primordial trembles and phantasmagorical harmonies, Please Touch is an alarmingly metaphysical exploration of the dancefloor that works from the inside out.