Beak Artist PhotoBeak has achieved that confoundingly difficult feat: originality and catchiness. He’s managed to integrate acoustic guitar with breakbeats and IDM in an ingeniously seamless way.

The first track of Amoral Mayor Earwig EP, how a hot air balloon works, starts out straightforwardly enough. Some quiet acoustic guitar plucks, repeating and slowly adding some more layers of guitar. Sure, there’s some digital delay but mostly it’s just guitar. Some bitcrushing distortion eases into the left speaker just enough to raise an eyebrow, but it keeps with the guitar thing. Oh nice, some drums. Maybe even live. Strange processed guitar in the background, almost voice-like. A single reversed cymbal, very quick. Drum break. Quite distorted. Wait, how did we end up here? By the time the second track, i saw two of me, starts our hot air balloon has caught the jet stream. No turning back now.

Amoral Mayor Earwig EP and Bishop-Whitney EP could be two sides of a single album. I tend to listen to these together. El Hacedor is perhaps a little more mysterious, a little mellower. All three are intriguing and highly enjoyable.


Beak on MySpace (bonus downloadable track, Limozeen)

Amoral Mayor Earwig EP: Stream | | Monotonik netlabel
Bishop Whitney EP: Stream | | Monotonik netlabel
El Hacedor: Stream | | Monotonik netlabel

This is part of a series of netlabel reviews.