BEST NEW INDIE: SHELTER POINT - FEEL
Nottingham's Shelter Point will make you feel things with "Feel"
"Feel" is a transcendental disco/house seeped in smooth, soulful vocals. It's warm, cool, detached, insistent. It's a contradictory dance tune that is that much more compelling for its nuance.
Shelter Point have been surfing the electronic music geist since their inception in 2011. Their earliest efforts were lush, luscious, epic anthems in the mode of Boards Of Canada and the manic maximalism of dubstep 3.0 like Mount Kimbie. Dance music, as a whole, has been stripped down to its component parts, in the last six years, and stitched back together in a spiralling array of new genres and styles.
"Feel" definitely sounds like knackered/lo-fi house, especially in the beginning, when a simple boom-bap disco beat is filtered and processed like an arthouse video of discotheques in the early 80s. The faded colors burst into full, vivid polychromatic song and dance with the dual vocals, when "Feel" settles into its main groove as a very satisfactory modern r&b/synthpop hybrid, funky, sexy, and restrained all at the same time.
SHELTER POINT - FEEL
This eclecticism and seemingly contradictory nature is well-suited for French house label Kitsune Hot Stream, who co-released "Feel" alongside Armada Music. Kitsune have been curating interesting, eclectic, world-class grooves that defy easy categorization since 2015. Kitsune Hot Stream feature a head-swirling array of styles and genres, from live funk bands to classical pianists. In our hyper-specific, niche fide world of playlists and genre purity, it's beyond refreshing to see a label willing to get eclectic. It's the only way that genres, scenes, and styles will continue to grow and evolve, expanding our musical imaginations in the same breath.
Shelter Point share the same tight-but-loose chemistry of classic Underworld, which is a large part of what made that band so successful. The organic interplay between voices cannot be faked or forced. Coordinating that organic chemistry to the machined precision of electronic music requires hard work and planning, however. The results, when they work, are electrifying.
Electrifying is an understatement with "Feel". Your hair will be standing on end by the time the final outro creeps in, as your body moves uncontrollably to the ecstasy of the beat. "Feel" has all the hallmarks of a massive success, if We Are: The Guard say so ourselves. And we do. We do. Get this on thy playlists, now, alongside your Opal Tapes and Caribou!
J. Simpson occupies the intersection between criticism, creativity, and academia. Based out of Portland, Or., he is the author of Forestpunk, an online journal/brand studying the traces of horror, supernatural, and the occult through music, fashion and culture. He plays in the dreamfolk band Meta-Pinnacle with his partner Lily H. Valentine, with whom he also co-founded Bitstar Productions, a visual arts collective focused on elevating Pop Culture to High Art.