March 2, 2018
Simon Formann's quietly formidable project Yen Towers forges new models of contemporary breathlessness with his latest work, 'First on Comedown.' The chiseled-ice dub of 'Bidders Must Justify Their Price' was a remarkably austere debut record, and this was soon followed by the mixtape 'One Look From The Boss,' a swarming departure for a deeper place in the rave. Since the last update Formann's hand in the effervescent world of Khalil has been revealed and some of the unknown qualities that led to the heights of Yen Towers can perhaps be filled in. 'First on Comedown' steps a little further in the direction that each of the past Yen Towers releases presented. However, it illuminates more than could have been anticipated, and we are left to consult our senses in unsecured strobe. A combative array of swelling, hypnotic synthesis establishes the foreground across 'First on Comedown,' yet it's the rhythmic palette whose casual whiplash is most immediately enduring. Along the way Formann carves melodic twists out of an atonal ensemble locked in swing, prompting the tracks through a dense emotive terrain with pace. It's like a kind of hyperactive whispering: part autonomous sensory meridian response, part energy drink. Whatever the secret is, Formann's latest addition to the Yen Towers catalogue cements the project as a bracing, moody metric for the future.