Creep – Days EP review

It’s hard to find words to accurately describe this debut EP from Creep, AKA Brooklyn producers Lauren Dillard and Lauren Flax. Picking up some hype due to the guest vocals of XX chanteuse Romy Madeley-Croft, Days is a supremely atmospheric record that neatly sidesteps easy categorization. Of course, that alone is not necessarily recommendation, but luckily this is a very special record indeed.

The EP opens with “Intro”, a two-minute ambient soundscape that sets out the duo’s stall impressively. Discordant, chiming synths, crackly atmospherics and skewed hip-hop samples give way to the sparsest of downtempo, dubstep-influenced beats. This is music for dark drives through desolate urban landscapes.

It’s the title track, though, which really stands out. Romy’s outstanding vocals are wrapped up tightly in a freakish, closeted soundscape of foreboding chords, scattergun beats and psychedelic guitars. While some would describe it as ‘witch house’, we’d argue that this is merely next-level horror-pop. It’s certainly beguiling.

The first of a pair of fine remixes comes from Deadboy. Moving into Jamie XX territory, the Brighton-based producer lays down a version of “Days” that cleared owes a lot to the former’s anthemic remix of Gil Scott Heron’s “NY Is Killing Me”. Certainly, it has a similar musical aesthetic – all post garage broken beats, chilling chords and delay-laden vocals. It’s a giant step forward for Deadboy, that’s for sure. The package is completed by a cosy analogue house take from Azari & III, which recasts the chilling original as a bubbling, retro-house groover.

Matt Anniss