Just when you thought all the good stage names were taken, Tommy Tickle comes around with a moniker like a children’s cartoon, or a gigolo, or a cartoon gigolo and throws his bona fides in your face. Shapes and Spaces is a phenomenal EP, eclectic enough that I thought SoundCloud was skipping around in a self-indulgent “next up” autoplay frenzy. But it is one guy, with five tracks hermetically enclosed with hidden treasures and spectacular sounds inside. “In The House” is the lead and the best track on here. This is the track that all the jocks are going to lead their sets with this summer – warm, building with energy, the first-page l’invitation au voyage that spellbinds as it leads the initiated past the gates. “Goldrush” recasts the big brass and reverb’d dub of a conscious nod to African disco with a smoothness and dancefloor sensibility that can’t be obtained from a rare sample. The disconnected, haunting “Eternal City” leads to the grooving experimental locomotive of “The Ceiling,” which drops out the percussion right when you expect some kind of intense peak-time build. It stays down for more than a minute right in the heart of the song, creating a tension more taut than a sexcrime thriller, like Tommy is wrestling to hold it down and keep it there.
I don’t think being different is necessarily praiseworthy unless it makes things better. Here it does.
Tommy Tickle: Shapes and Spaces (Ad Hoc Records)
1. Tommy Tickle: In The House (06:32)
2. Tommy Tickle: God Chord (05:30)
3. Tommy Tickle: Goldrush (05:51)
4. Tommy Tickle: Eternal City (07:03)
5. Tommy Tickle: The Ceiling (06:48)