Nathan Fake Drowning In A Sea Of Love

[Border Community; 2006]

Rating: 4.5/5

Styles: IDM, progressive, electronica
Others: James Holden, Boards Of Canada, Petter, Alias, Broadcast

Sweet Exorcist's C.C.E.P., Bogus Order's Zen Brakes, and Nathan Fake's Drowning In A Sea Of Love: what do they all have in common? They are/were the first albums to be released on highly influential, movement-shaping indie electronic labels. If Border Community becomes even half as big as Warp and Ninja Tune — and, judging from the consistency and immeasurable quality of everything James Holden's label has yet put out, they have a serious shot — that'll just be another in a long list of reasons to remember the name Nathan Fake (which actually is his real name).

Previous to this, all I'd really heard of Fake was the Holden remix of "The Sky Was Pink," which was the centerpiece of Rob da Bank's Fabric 24 mix. His Satoshi Tomiie-released Watlington Street EP and other assorted singles all painted a picture of the young Reading resident as a straightforward, albeit highly talented, progressive producer. So each time I put on Sea Of Love, I had to keep checking to make sure I'd put in the right disc. This Sea was swimming in downtempo IDM, expanding Fake's previously shown love of cascading synths and apparent affection towards Boards Of Canada. This possibly excludes the original "The Sky Was Pink" and "You Are Here," as those two cuts render electronically tortured guitars and/or organically strained synths in such a way as to almost make them post-rock, though they're surely not out of place on this impressive debut. In light of the fact that Fake is a pure laptop producer with no stated DJ aspirations, this variance makes sense; but considering that he's only in his early twenties, this level of believable flexibility, maturity, and melodical prowess is remarkable. To be sure, Fake is one to watch for a long, long time. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and this album is a big one. Keep 'em coming, BC.

1. Stops
2. Grandfathered
3. Charlie's House
4. Bumblechord
5. Superpositions
6. Bawsey
7. The Sky Was Pink
8. You Are Here
9. Falmer
10. Long Sunny
11. Fell

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