Frankly, trying to review this album sent me into Barton Fink-mode. For a while, I planned to settle on that single sentence alone as my review. Only after several repeat listens could I begin to wrangle some verbiage. What is EELRIJUE? Is it an anagram? The name of an ancient Nordic sea serpent? This was a mystery wrapped in an enigma before I even pressed play; a great start.
What follows is a sound more developed since Algorhythms’ self-titled first album. It’s functions have been reformulated and optimised into something more “elegant”, to borrow algorithmic terminology, like an evolving organism that’s shedding redundant appendages or streamlining metabolic pathways on an intracellular level. Testament to this is the albums lean runtime of twenty minutes, and a general aesthetic of conciseness and cohesion.
Its dubbed “psychedelic” but, being largely devoid of reverb-shrouds and possessed instrumentation; it occupies the more serene and lucid end of the subgenre’s scale. You get the impression that Dr. Quandary’s mind was wandering some astral plane as his hands remained in ours working the production gear. The instrumental arrangements are considered and evocative, with the line between sample and session musician, if one exists, being indeterminable. Onto this, Thirty Seven presents a mix of commentary and parables, with each line often being a truncated essay unto itself. Allusions to logarithmic spirals are balanced with critiques of the heuristic human brain. However his insight is conveyed with the objectivity of someone who’s read enough to see the big picture blur; check ‘Galaxy Map’ which, to this effect, could be considered the project’s integral track.
To go into any more detail would be reductive. EELRIJUE’s unspecific yet magnetic exterior, from its title to its album art, demands experience-based-discovery; you must hear each track for yourself. You may however find that it’s over just as it’s hitting its stride. Maybe Algorhythmns could have panned it out a bit more, maybe they didn’t have anything else to say on this particular joint. Anything this outwardly unassuming is unlikely to be heard very widely. However, by its very nature, the fate of a digital runestone to be exhumed and appreciated by future listeners would almost suit this fantastic oddity.