Ryan Lee West is a critically acclaimed, London-based electronic music producer, best known as Rival Consoles. Over the course of his 15-year career, the London-based electronic music producer’s work has diversified from the challenging electronic output of his early EPs to gradually become more conceptual and metamorphic: 2020’s Articulation used drawings and sketches to imagine and developed each track while last year’s Overflow explored themes of the human and emotional consequences of life surrounded by advancing technologies, including social media that was composed for choreographer Alex Whitley‘s contemporary dance production of the same name.
West’s consistent desire to create a more organic, humanized sound often sees the acclaimed British producer often developing early ideas on guitar or piano; forming pieces that capture and evoke a sense of songwriting behind the electronics. His eighth album Now Is, is slated for an October 14, 2022 release through Erased Tapes. Reportedly featuring some of the most playful and melodic material of his catalog in some time, the album draws on music, as well as art, film, colors, shapes and human emotions.
“The title of the record Now Is interests me because it is the beginning of a statement, but it is incomplete. I like art that is open and suggestive of ideas even if they are inspired by very specific things,” West explains. “With my previous record Overflow being very dark, heavy and almost dystopian, I wanted to escape into a different world with this music and ended up creating a record which is a lot more colorful and euphoric.”
Earlier this year, I wrote about the Autobahn-era and Trans Europe Express-era Kraftwerk-like album title track “Now Is,” track that was centered around a relentless motorik pulse and glistening synth arpeggios that evoked prismatic bursts of color exploding before the listener’s eyes.
“World Turns,” Now Is‘ third and latest single continues a remarkable run of material featuring a relentless motorik pulse — built from a propulsive bass line, glistening synths, and tweeter and woofer rattling, industrial thump — paired with a gently morphing song structure in which tempo and tone shift throughout its run time. It’s soulful, thoughtful electronic music with a human soul and beating heart.
“The essence of ‘World Turns’ is built around this pendulum-like bass, that constantly drives the piece forward,” West describes. “I like having parts in music which are repetitive but everything else is changing around it, almost like a kind of hidden structure, because the repetition becomes more subliminal.”
“I think of this music as being like industry, the industry of stuff having to be made. The world carrying on doing things whether or not it is good or bad, relentlessly moving forward — sometimes chaotic, sometimes more ordered.”