Published Nov 06, 2016On new album Deep Thoughts, Giant Claw (Keith Rankin) is clearly having fun, and he wants you to join in. It's beyond mere exuberance: the way he uses human voices as playthings to create exotic sounds in the opening track, for example, is nothing short of whimsical, and by the time you get to "Deep Thoughts 003," things are getting downright cartoonish, what with watery plopping noises, gulps and sighs and so on. Rankin veers awfully close to Art of Noise silliness, but as much fun as he's having, it's clear that there's serious intent in these works.
Throughout Deep Thoughts lies a solid base of sonorous, string-like synths that lend an air of sincerity and keep the pieces grounded; while your feet are planted firmly in the ground, your head is being pulled into another realm by Rankin's flights of fancy.
Aside from Rankin's playfulness Deep Thoughts is also pleasantly easy to listen, being less "avant-garde," per se, than purely adventurous. There may be abrupt left-turns and even changes in tempo, but there's always a reliable beat to grab onto. Deep Thoughts is a safe journey, but it's a charming record, aesthetically surprising and satisfying at once. (Orange Milk)