teen daze – a world away

the trajectory of teen daze’s relatively short career is exhausting to cover, as his prolific nature and a general curiosity have prompted over a dozen releases in the past four years.  the abbotsford producer truly hit his stride with 2013’s glacier, a monumental album that found him juggling his electronic and ambient ambitions with aplomb.  but his trajectory is by no means linear, and teen daze has proven that he’s inclined to shed certain acquired attributes like live instrumentation if it’s beneficial to his creative intellect.  his newest ep, a world away, is an interesting side-step, one that finds him delving deep into dance music without throwing in the towel on his ambient palate.

boasting six well-developed tracks, a world away flows and technically qualifies as a full-length album despite its rather utilitarian purpose as a tour ep for teen daze’s upcoming stint in europe.  while it’s ultimately a placeholder for his follow-up to glacier, the ep still feels like a cohesive, standalone unit and is anything but hastily prepared.  “reykjavik, january 2015” retains mere minutes of its acoustic piano motif before being swallowed whole by muted drums and persistent synth jabs, perhaps the perfect musical allusion to the duality of teen daze’s musical persona.  the ep’s strongest tracks, “another night” and “than,” feel somewhat indebted to house music despite their occasional chilly moments.  “than” is the longest piece on a world away, clocking in at nearly nine minutes, but any semblance of redundancy disappears once his commanding use and development of polyrhythms in separate drum tracks becomes apparent.

teen daze closes out a world away with “i feel god in the water,” a customary ambient track that has almost become his calling card.  above all else this project has always felt incredibly pensive, and the fact that jamison continues to end his recordings with a placid, stagnant piece is a telling indication of just how intimate his music truly is.  though his next full-length isn’t due until later this year, a world away is still an important juncture in teen daze’s discography and goes beyond the purpose it serves to offer potential insight into his future endeavors.

7.7/10

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