Whilst most of us celebrated the passing of Old Year's by sharing kisses, and the clinking of champagne glasses, Black Atlass, stage name of 18 year old singer, songwriter and experimental producer Alex Fleming, was already beginning to churn the musical tides of 2012, when he released the visuals for his original composition, "Hills".
Native to the eclectically romantic city of Montreal, and now temporary resident in London, Ontario, Atlass brings the Old World charm of his home and infuses it with stark synth landscapes and enormously empty drums not only creating a name for himself, but also eradicating any notions of a specific genre. Coupled with his dreamy, intensely reverbed vocals and inventive melodies, this young maverick has fashioned quite a unique project few will be prepared for. It's something you have to hear to understand.
"The Black Atlass EP", his first EP released on Green United Music, is a six song teaser of things to come. Even in the relatively brief foray, lasting only 18 minutes, Altlass manages to create a plethora of different productions styles varying from the sample heavy banger "Ways", to the ethereal keys found cascading amidst the synthesizer wails of the Paris Interlude.
One of the most captivating aspects of this young artist can only be appreciated once you have witnessed him performing his special brand of crooning in person. Armed only with awkward personability and his MPD/computer combo, this troubadour sings while re-producing his beats live, to slay any notions of disbelief in regards to his talent. He even takes the process one step further when he records his music and plays each song's instrumental in real time drectly from his MPD. This means when you listen to his music, the instrumental backing you hear accompanying his vocals are not the result of quantized drum patterns and sequencing, but fined tuned precision and enviable musical ability.
Fusing his polarizingly different sound-scape with an undeniable musicality, Black Atlass is definitely an act to look out for in 2012. You should expect to see a couple interesting collaborations with some well-known Toronto area performers before the end of this year.
Something great this way comes.