Pan/Tone Skip The Foreplay

Sheldon Thompson’s fifth album as Pan/Tone sees his palette of sounds getting funkier without losing its rich sound design. Having moved to Berlin recently, Thompson embraces a more propulsive sound but resists the temptation to make the beats crush everything in their path. Precise dub arpeggiations are still a major part of the proceedings, with rhythmic information coming from everywhere in the mix. Yet the sense of play is greater: a block rocking cowbell turns up in "Dirty Deeds”; a naughty, bilingual vocal exchange heats up "Perdon Pan/Tone”; and the singular word "Shame” is folded into a catchy acoustic guitar hook to create, dare I say, an organic-sounding groove. Pan/Tone can still confound and enthrall with mutant polyrhythms — the 6/8 "Muckefuk” is only the most extreme example of the power of establishing a 4/4 thump then deviating from it. Skip the Foreplay will definitely please fans and likely win new converts to Pan/Tone’s fun yet banging grooves. (Cereal Killers)