Pariah PariahSafehouses EP
R&S (RS1005, 2x12” + digital)
Pariah, the moniker of young Arthur Cayzer, was originally one of the first to continue –or imitate, if you prefer– the Burial sound. On his first known production, a remix for The xx ( “Basic Space”), his way of coupling breaks and textures was suspiciously similar to the “Untrue” formula: muffled bass lines, filtered voices that are little more than distant echoes, static and sad moods. Then “Detroit Falls / Orpheus” (R&S, 2010), his first official release, appeared and things didn’t seem so similar anymore. He had developed towards Detroit techno, expansive and serene like in a flight towards the stars by Kenny Larkin. So Pariah has moved away from Burial and got closer to (for example) Actress, and just so that no-one will ever go on about his influences again –as if that were a bad thing– “Safehouses EP” is a titanic effort to be himself, for once: Pariah, in his own voice.
Six tracks divided over two vinyls, an ambitious single without a storyline. It shows all the angles of a polyhedron of which people only saw one side, his face in the shadows. The Burial moment is there on “Railroad”, in the intro and the sexless celestial voices, with the addition of a break in the middle of the track that raises the cadence and goes towards a luxuriously textured half-step, like a slow-motion Omni Trio. The same voices are featured on “Crossed Out”, although it’s Pariah’s interpretation of the pinched harmonies of Todd Edwards and 2step, and beyond that the similarities are to be looked for in other fields. “Safehouses” is the not very original but always welcome ambient closing track, for example, and “C-Beams” is an incursion into the broken hip-hop of Illum Sphere. And the techno that invaded “Detroit Falls” a couple of months ago? Cayzer saves it for “Prism” (which in reality is slowed-down future bass with an electro break and a cascade of synthesiser notes), and above all for “The Slump”, the opening track. “The Slump” is the key: in a funky unfolding that could belong to Ramadanman, Pariah incorporates another old school electro sequence that forces the neck to twist and turn fervently and euphorically. It’s one of the EPs of the year, but that’s not the important thing. The best thing is that Pariah is no longer a clone, but a prince. Javier Blánquez