As Rival Consoles, London electronic producer Ryan Lee West explores subtlety | Concert Preview | Chicago Reader

As Rival Consoles, London electronic producer Ryan Lee West explores subtlety 

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click to enlarge Rival Consoles

Rival Consoles

Özge Cöne

Last month London DJ and producer Ryan Lee West (aka Rival Consoles) told PopMatters that his latest LP, April’s Persona (Erased Tapes), has “lots of subtlety across the record that excites me more than something that is loud or more intense.” Indeed, Persona has enough sonic complexity to whet the appetite of a filmmaker searching for ambitious, fluid, and immersive electronic instrumental music for her soundtrack without the 80s-nostalgia trappings of Stranger Things or the overdramatic blasts that fester in Inception that are both so common in film and music these days. Loosely inspired by the 1966 Ingmar Bergman film of the same name, Persona blossoms as West explores meditative states. Take the quiet, echoing synths that nudge along the sedate “Be Kind,” or the razor-sharp synth patterns that twist and turn throughout “I Think So”; the minor changes in those crucial elements help alter their environments, making each track feel like uninhabited terrain worth exploring over and over again.   v

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Performing Arts
The Great Leap Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Upstairs Theatre
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