Arca Arca

Arca Arca

8
Last year, Venezuelan producer Alejandro Ghersi followed up his stunning sophomore full-length Mutant with an ultra-dark mixtape called Entrañas. Tucked away after the maniacal and stalwart electronic mayhem was a piece named "Sin Rumbo," a morose, Lynchian song that featured Ghersi's solemn vocals — sung in his native Spanish — at the forefront.
 
Little did his audience know that the producer was priming them for the bulk of the content of his third LP, which was set to be titled Reverie but has ultimately arrived eponymously. Singles "Piel" and "Anoche," which arrived in advance of the album, were further evidence that Ghersi has continued to stray from the beloved chaos of previous full-length outings. That these two tracks kick off the proceedings is a daring statement, immediately broadcasting the producer's choice to feature his own gorgeously fragile vocals.
 
"Saunter" and "Urchin," which follow the two singles, break their pattern slightly by turning the focus back toward fractured electronics, yet they maintain a solemn sensibility that pervades as "Reverie" enters with Ghersi's enchanting vocals out front once more. This back-and-forth is carried along throughout Arca, demonstrating that Ghersi hasn't lost his fondness for tempered electronic cacophony (see "Castration" and "Whip"), but has expanded his palette, to mind-bendingly gorgeous results. (XL)