Soma Sonic Sim-pli-ci-ty

Seven years is a long time to wait for a sophomore album, but that’s not to say Soma Sonic haven’t been extremely busy. Brothers Francois and Dominic Paterson have been exploring the use of music in the visual arts, scoring several feature films as well as credits for work on numerous other big and small screen enterprises. Their dark, moody, down-tempo style has morphed into a jazzier amalgam of lounge, chill-out, house and trip-hop since debut album Future, with the welcome addition of minimalist chanteuse Christelle Pechin completing the transformation. Sim-pli-ci-ty is an apt title, with traditional balladic structures and motifs tied together by impeccable production. Warm synthesisers and light jazzy breaks complement Christelle’s beautiful voice to create a sensual and emotive sound. Though the eight remixes on the double-disc album are each interesting variations on the originals, the decision to scatter them over both discs (often before the original) seems a little strange and sounds discontinuous at times with transitions between house remixes and the softer style held by the rest of the album. "Memories,” "Could It Be Real” and the simply gorgeous eponymous track stand out in this collection of modern thematic and cinematic music. France and Dom’s experience in different mediums has been useful but the contribution from Pechin is arguably the greatest factor in strengthening Soma Sonic’s music. (Subsonic)