LOLGurlz & The Oracle – ‘Red Pill and Blue Pill’ (Lost Codes)

Visionist’s ‘Lost Codes’ imprint have enjoyed a really strong 2013, releasing impressionable, hard as nails EPs from Bloom and raw new talents Acre and Saga, and making a lasting impression on a year that’s essentially belonged to instrumental grime. That said, they’ve given us more to discuss before the year’s out too.The label’s fourth transmission of the last 12 months once again looks to mysterious artistry and unfamiliar names to deliver the goods as Lolgurlz & The Oracle team up on four tracks of instrumental wizardry.

The ‘Red Pill and Blue Pill’ EP, as its title suggests, takes the bold stand point of seemingly trying to explore perceptions of reality, but obvious Matrix references aside, the music really does ask questions of the listener. Grime-flavoured yes, but certainly by no means in keeping with the swathes of hard-hitting 8 bar monsters or melodic, string-laden cuts that have dominated proceedings of late, there is a great deal of experimentation here. In fact, the whole EP feels like a weirdly successful exercise in trial and error, with a barrage of different ideas and sounds clearly bouncing off each other throughout.

Title track ‘Red And Blue Pill’, backed up by a typically ferocious Visionist remix, is pretty bizarre in its composition, working sparse drums and icy FX and setting them against a stunning little bassline and a super-infectious melody but without ever really settling into any conventional rhythm; seems that’s the point here though. Elsewhere, ‘Love You’ is far colder, again working sparse drums but this time exploring a more textbook blueprint; think stripped back true-skool dubstep with bonus grimy atmospherics. Final cut ‘Da Descent’ switches things up again, opting for far more rhythmic drums to open with but as with the rest, doesn’t settle for long; unpredictable breaks and surprise basslines almost make it feel like three tracks in one.

As with everything Lost Codes have done this year, this is an EP that simultaneously elevates new talent and pushes boundaries in every conceivable direction, and with this particular effort, a few perceptions too. A great introduction.

‘Red Pill and Blue Pill’ is out now. Buy here.

Tomas Fraser

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