pre order; release date 8/04
Nearly two years into “unprecedented times” where a long-term relationship with social distancing and global uncertainty proves more difficult by the day, Jacques Greene manages to locate some beauty in a claustrophobic reality with this downtempo set.
Greene’s last effort, 2019’s Dawn Chorus, found the French-Canadian producer moving ever further from the club, finding more interest conjuring the stillness before sunrise and the nostalgic sounds of shoegaze. Fantasy only continues Greene’s retreat, but not nearly as willingly as before. According to Greene, staying isolated from loved ones during the initial wave of the pandemic allowed anxiety and loneliness to “stretch its legs and make itself comfortable,” which led the producer to create Fantasy amidst a weeks-long journey to find peace in his surroundings. The result is an EP that sounds blissful even at its most anxious thanks to Greene’s immaculate sound design.
Opener ‘Taurus’ is an apt barometer of where Fantasy’s headspace is at, letting collaborator Leanne Macomber’s wordless vocals soar and soften Greene’s jittery breaks. Playful nostalgia continues to be a balm for Greene on ‘Memory Screen / Fantasy,’ sourcing samples from Gran Turismo 3 to conjure late nights disassociating to Playstation load screens. Still, loneliness remains in striking distance throughout Fantasy; ‘Sky River’ is the EP’s closest pull towards ambient music, but nevertheless turns out one of the EP’s more restless moments as guest vocalist Satomimagae channels Grouper’s haunted minimalism over the track’s steady build. Greene admits in press materials that the mood while crafting the EP was less dreamy than its title suggests and more “get me the fuck out of here,” but Fantasy can’t help but sound cocooned in its own warmth and self-soothing.