Artist: Magical Mistakes
Release Date: May (Estimated)
Label: King Deluxe
King Deluxe are a Canadian label, based out of British Columbia that specialize in alternative and experimental hip-hop. One of their most recent signings goes by the moniker Magical Mistakes (Aka Erik Luebs). Erik Luebs is a Californian-born musician that currently lives in Osaka, Japan. Much like the beginnings of Justin Vernon (Aka Bon Iver), when Luebs first moved to Japan, he spent three years living in Shiiba-son, named the countries third-most remote village where he focused his attention towards creating music and absorbing the local culture as well as teaching in the community. During this time he recorded his Special Friends EP, but since then, Luebs moved to the larger city of Osaka, where he created his upcoming EP Decompose/Reassemble as well as working to manage, and promote his label Perfect Touch.
With the beginnings that Erik Luebs has had, you can almost feel the elements of Asia flowing through his music. It is arguable that this coalition between musical influences is exactly what Luebs has striven for, to combine Eastern and Western music in one easily accessible format. This effort leads us directly to Magical Mistakes upcoming EP Decompose/Reassemble, due out in May, although this is dependent on whether or not the music video is ready in time.
(Above: The video Erik Luebs lists as his description on his Facebook profile.)
Laid Out is the first of the six tracks Magical Mistakes offers on Decompose/Reassemble and it is a great archetype for the feel of the EP. It starts with a delicate oriental raindrop sound as though it could have been done on a muted shamisen or a similar instrument. One thing for sure is that it has that traditional vibe, which is later met by ethereal vocal samples and would be the perfect track to soundtrack a dream sequence. It is a song, much like many others on the EP that you could almost hear without really hearing. By that I mean that you have heard it and absorbed it before you are really sure what you’ve just experienced; it almost taps into your sub-conscious and plays their before your ears know what’s hit them.
The seamless quality of Decompose/Reassemble is most likely the main contributor for this effect, which in this instance I should call The Luebs Effect. (Patent pending ladies and gentlemen.) Laid Out bleeds into the second track of the EP Moves So Slowly and ironically, the pace has quickened a little, almost as though the songs are reflecting the brain’s neural activity whilst asleep, slow, building to fast and then to slow (In the third track Hollow Bodies) before completing the cycle once more.
On the whole, the EP has only a few negatives. For me, I feel as though its greatest strength is its main weakness. It’s clear that Luebs has gone for a similar vibe to produce an almost hypnotic effect and there’s no doubt about its efficacy, but I can’t help but feel as though this repetition makes it very difficult to differentiate between one song and another, and so it’s hard to recall a favourite track from the EP without listening back until you stumble across the one you liked.
There are times that I feel this EP would have been better suited as being a soundtrack to a dream sequence or to an experimental short film, rather than anything that I would listen to for pleasure.
That being said, there is no denying the greatness of Lueb’s work, it has depth and vision and almost transcends all possible limitations in music into something delicate and secretive.
Conclusively, if you’re having trouble sleeping and you’ve tried all the apps that give you the chance to listen to waterfalls and rain drops on tin roofs, then Erik Luebs is the man you turn to for the final solution. Whether you are a long time fan of this genre of music or you are as new to it as I am, it’s wholly worth losing yourself into Decompose/Reassemble for the twenty odd minutes it runs.
If you like anything you read, or are interested to learn more about Magical Mistakes then click one of these links:
Facebook | Soundcloud | Official Website | Twitter