I can’t help but ask myself where Babe Rainbow are coming from exactly. From hip-hop? There are beats on most of their tracks, and the start of this 12”, “It’s All Happening”, could even be an expressionist remix of a Jurassic 5 song (mainly because of the flute hiding between the slow percussion and the mysterious atmosphere). But the whole of this “Endless Path EP”, like on last year’s “Shaved EP” (Warp, 2010), isn’t exactly urban. A B-boy would walk away from this material, unless by coincidence he’s Clams Casino, a beatmaker who’s unafraid of using forest textures, dubstep influences and esoteric sounds for his productions, and with those references we start to understand, little by little, who this musician, about whom we know little more than his name (Cameron Reed) and his hometown (Vancouver) in the cold west of Canada, what he’s doing and where he’s going.
There are two lines on this 12”: on one hand there are the rhythm-driven tracks ( “Set Loose”, a downtempo deviation over a magic path in the woods that leads not to a haunted castle but to a sparkling cascade; it shines with light, not darkness), but most of all, there are the tunes dominated by dark tones and esoterism. Babe Rainbow has a clear connection with witch house in the vein of Tri Angle Records and Salem when they’re at their least gruesome ( “Greed”, with the vocal crunk contribution of Yung Clova), and it’s in that grey area between rap, ghostly ambient and echoing, spacey dubstep where Reed is a fish in the water. An enchanting EP for the sensitive creatures of the night.