Starting with 'Despite All Odds,' you're immediately transported to a dark, claustrophobic sound space. Sounds of nature infused with tortured guitars and cutting synthesizers buries you deeper into this introspective place.
This sets us up for 'Nightmare Division,' the first track featuring a collaboration with Gilan_Music. Both the low male and high female vocals are sung by her, and it creates an experience that feels uncomfortable, but in a good way. You can help but be hypnotised by the layers of this polyphonic space.
Zaflon himself sums up the complexity of this better than I could: “This track uses a lot of samples of river noises that I recorded on the Thames riverbank, including the hull of a big old barge being hit with a stick. There are flies, doors and breaking watermelons in there, too, among plenty of other things. Abstracted guitars and an outro consisting of an old piano and a 909 drum machine play out as a modern nocturne. The river driftwood vibe is a theme that runs throughout LDP 1.”
After this, 'Dear Friend of Mine' is Zaflon's tribute to a school friend of his who died earlier in the year after leading a troubled life. You sense a very different message being communicated with this track, as the only one to use metallic samples and alternative synthesizer sounds. I'm curious as to whether there is a more literal dedication in the lyrics sung halfway through. Could they be lyrics they wrote during their time in a band together?
'7 Stalkers' wraps up the EP with another collaboration with Gilan_Music. This is more conceptual, telling the story of 7 stalkers closing in on their victim, with a bigger statement about our personified sins through capitalist greed and mass manipulation. The flirtatious slow crescendo towards a hard-hitting drum section midway through, which fades away as quick has to be a favourite section of mine, and one that Zaflon must know is a bit of a troll (a good one of course).
If you're a fan of the likes of Royksopp, Massive Attack and Air, this darker adventure through downtempo electronic mind of Zaflon is well worth a listen.