The story of Descender is pretty irresistible, no matter how much it has been embellished for the sake of intrigue. After all, here we have a Grammy-nominated New Yorker who challenges himself with a one month deadline to record his ambitious first solo effort. He hatches a bold plan and emails home-notated scores to the 75-piece Prague Philharmonic, to which their conductor (leading Czech baton-wielder Adam Klemens) replies, informing him that the sheet music is too strange and that the brilliant geriatrics in his orchestra may have trouble reading it. He then politely suggests that it might be wise to call their pre-booked sessions off. At this point, the orchestrator of this whole debacle books his flight to Prague anyway. That man, Andrew Wyatt of Miike Snow fame, now releases the product of those sessions, revealing the fruits of his harebrained foray into grandiosity.

Of course, Wyatt isn't your average debutant - he has written and recorded with various modern day big-hitters (Bruno Mars, Mark Ronson) - however Descender's strength lies in the fact that it never sounds overwrought like his collaborators, even despite of its bombastic orchestral realisation. Opener 'Horse Latitudes' exemplifies this; a dark, stirring introductory arrangement, at funeral march pace, precedes intimate whisperings from Wyatt - whose vocals bounce and disorientate. It juxtaposes thrillingly, of course, with 'Harlem Boyzz', which woos with Gene Pitney-ish loftiness, a Frankie Valli falsetto hook and lyrics which include the words "crackheads" and "McDonalds". It takes multiple revisits to hear the two's intrinsic similarities; a wonderful natural quality, which suggests that he hasn't over-analysed his own creative process, but recorded in the same organic way as the 50s and 60s crooners he wishes to crookedly emulate. In that respect, you can feel the LP's limited time-scale; it's a project of passion rather than a confused and painstaking labour of love.

This feels equally apparent in 'She's Changed', which sees his twisted cinematic vision come to life. Journeying on a freeform, Yann Tiersen-like structure, it travels progressively from quaint and curious melodies to the sort of menacing riff that Marc Bolan made teen girls scream with. Needless to say, it's an odd centrepiece and one that only rewards in context. On the contrary, 'It Won't Let You Go' is a winding ballad worthy of a wedding dance; its parped climax and cracked vocals are bewilderingly brilliant - like Phil Collins if he was to document a slide into drug-addled insanity in song form. It's here that Descender begins its own descent towards madness - with a backmasked interlude (the title track) and the Serge Gainsbourg-esque slow-build, 'In Paris They Know How to Build a Monument'. Both are hallucinogenic, unhinged and mildly unsettling in an utterly compelling way. The perfect setup for the finale, 'There Is A Spring', which is a dumbfounding piece that totally defies the somewhat bumbling persona he hints at during the 'Making Of' teaser doc; classically-constructed with a Ludovico Einaudi-like piano refrain and suitably Eastern European instrumentation that’s evocative of the score to 'Good Bye Lenin!', it's a triumphant curtain call.

However ostentatious his efforts sound on paper, Wyatt's debut goes hand in glove with its enticing back story; a record that rewards your investment, balancing the sugary with the sinister to provide a snap shot into the slightly frayed mind of a beguiling talent.