Rob Voland – ‘The Secret Code’ [Paris E.P.], Assorted Records; 2011

Listening to musician Rob Voland‘s ‘The Secret Code‘ is an interesting experience, if only for the EP’s contrasts between light and dark through meaty funk bass and wispy indie rock rhythms. Yet aside from the obvious comparisons to night and day, the actual similarities between the two gives a musically in-depth picture of the record’s chilled out atmosphere.

The E.P. first creates this contrast through a process of layering – one track of solid, dark seventies’ funk before another of willowy, late noughtie’s indie – and then brings them together for the remainder of its fourteen minute running-length. ‘Do You Still…‘ sees Voland pit drawn out, airy vocal notes against a deep, booming bassline to pensive effect, which sets theĀ  stage for the measured guitar swagger on closing track ‘I Saw The Wolf‘. The reason for mentioning this musical movement is more to do with the previously cited laid-back tone of Voland‘s E.P., rather than his skills as a songwriter and instrumentalist. Though strong, it would have been fascinating to have had more tracks on ‘The Secret Code‘, to build up more evidence of this for future audiences and admirers.

6.5/10

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