What So Not give away long-awaited ‘Gemini’ EP, includes final selection of Flume production
For some time now, considering Flume as a component of What So Not has been a euphemistic exercise. Since Harley Streten’s meteoric success as a solo musician came into fruition, What So Not’s other half, Chris Emerson – or Emoh Instead, has been the sole live representative for the Australian duo.
However, Flume’s official departure from the group still incurred a significant turning point for What So Not. Despite his absence on tours, his presence in What So Not was instrumental to the group’s composition as well as their marketing. For over a year now, the pair’s Gemini EP has been hotly anticipated – not only because of its plethora of new material, but also because it officially marks Harley Streten’s swan song for his seminal partnership.
Over a year in the making, Gemini does not disappoint. A fitting farewell to Flume, Gemini perfectly melds the melodic mysticism of Harley Streten’s inspirations with the broken-beat aggression centric to Emerson’s composition. As with prior What So Not releases, the EP proffers a significant focus toward vocal performances, with almost every track featuring verses from a variety of vocalists, including George Maple, KLP, Dawn Golden, and rapper Tunji Ige.
A true collaborative effort between Streten and Emerson, the track list holistically vacillates between mystical melancholy and brash, broken-beat belligerence. While each song has something unique to offer to the collection as a whole, the EP’s standout manifests in What So Not’s ravenously anticipated collaboration with Dillon Francis. Colloquially known for the last two years as “Dill’s Mom,” their official collaboration “Arrows (Feat. Dawn Golden)” has been a staple in both Dillon and What So Not’s live performances since its initial conception. Almost a synesthetic madrigal in its form, “Arrows” features whirring, razor-sharp synthesis that harken to the sensation of soaring arrows toward a vulnerable auditory target. Simultaneously lugubrious and aggressive, “Arrows” relieves Dillon Francis and What So Not fans alike, many of whom had likely given up on the record ever surfacing as an official release.
Even though Flume’s departure from What So Not has been underway for a significant time, the release of Gemini solidifies his absence with a wistful nostalgia. It’s sad to see Streten’s farewell from his iconic partnership with Emerson, but at the same time, exciting to see in what directions Emoh will take the brand as a solo endeavor.
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