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King Midas Sound – Lost review

Composed of veteran producer Kevin Martin (the man behind dancehall project The Bug) and Trinidadian poet-singer-cum-MC, Roger Robinson, King Midas Sound have carved out a niche for themselves in Kode 9’s Hyperdub club. Purveyors of a unique blend of what can only be loosely termed dubstep – taking a grounding in dub, dancehall, elements of trip hop and that elusive funky-tinged je ne sais quois which separates the wheat from the chaff – King Midas Sound made their mark on the musical world with their critically acclaimed 2009 album, Waiting For You. Now, a year on, they return with “Lost” – one of the defining tracks from the aforementioned album and deep, meditative cut “Frequencies”.

Mournful instrumental breezes dominate the intro of “Lost” before Robinson’s smoky, soulful falsetto drifts over delicate guitar licks and shaking drums deftly tap the beat as we enter the main tune. What’s striking about King Midas Sound’s “Lost”, in contrast to the predominantly beat-led nature of most electronic music, is that the music, and the song itself, tells a deeply emotional story with great immediacy – one which we can all relate to in its crushing futility, “I lost you, I lost you, let this feeling go away…” The fragility of Robinson’s voice is complimented by crisp, pared down beats and meticulously mellow atmospherics, which tread the fine line between ‘sorrowful’ and ‘contemplative’ masterfully.

Over on the flip, a thumping drum kick amidst crackling Burial-esque white noise kicks things off in “Frequencies”. Sonorous, oriental wailing vox from the French star Pupajim add a pervasive sense of haunting loneliness to the track, much like its counterpart on the A Side. Deep subs articulating the ‘low frequencies’ invoked in the lyrics murmur beneath guitar flourishes and low-slung, loping drums. Another excellent cut from King Midas Sound – stirring soul food of the ultimate sort with gently sculpted soundscapes and thought provoking lyrics.

Belinda Rowse