This year, the California based contemporary R&B group The Internet, who was nominated for a Grammy for their excellent record Ego Death last year, saw pretty much every member of the band release a solo record. The band initially got their claim to fame as producers for a local collective of rappers called Odd Future, the very same collective that housed Tyler, the Creator, Earl Sweatshirt, Domo Genesis, and Frank Ocean. Syd, the breakout artist and lead vocalist, released her debut solo record Fin earlier this year to critical acclaim, and it seems the rest of the band has followed suit, as Matt Martians (the producer/drum programmer) and Steve Lacy (the guitar player/producer) have released records of their own as well.
On a surface level, both records are pretty pleasant. They both have airy yet sometimes straining sounding falsetto’s, a lot like Thundercat’s. They both also feature really interesting production, with the complement more leaning toward the more seasoned Matt Martians, whose record really stands out when it comes to instrumentation and drum programming. The mixing on Steve Lacy’s record is actually quite undesirable, as each hi-hat on some tracks sound like they’re clamoring right by my ear.
The Drum Chord Theory, on the other hand, feels like as Matt Martians dives deeper and deeper into his emotional funk, there exists a kind of contentedness in which it doesn’t feel truly definitive. They both feel very experimental, and while certain tracks stand out such as Martians’ “Southern Isolation” or Lacy’s “Dark Red,” the general feel is that of content.