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When a piece of music seems familiar, it can mean one of two things: excellent songwriting, or rote derivation from what came before. ON LY OU, the forthcoming debut LP from Colchester electronic artist Attaque, embodies both, exploring tropes that are often too easily digested, and yet still effectively creating flavours and moods to satisfy most any appetite. Attaque definitely has a few tricks of his own, and the novel aspects of the record, the aspects that may yet come to define him as an artist, are the ones that kept me coming back for more.

The most marked of Attaque's novelty is his heavy and delightful use of bell tones throughout the record, particularly on tracks 'Distant' and 'Isolation'. Both set a playful aura of a sort of fantasyland, complete with colourful nymphs with shimmery skin and anthropomorphic chipmunks serving each other tea. Where the album falters is where Attaque slips into prototypical electro-lounge music, seemingly written for the greased up bro with one too many buttons undone. They harken back to Attaque's days touring the globe as a techno DJ. But those tracks, with their overwrought loops, pale in comparison to songs like 'Change Your Mind' (the most heartfelt of the ten), 'You Can't Surrender If You're Already Dead' (a bizzaro Explosions in the Sky song, with a bizzaro EITS song title to go with it), and 'Let it Down' (Damien Rice's melodic tendencies meet the dark glitch of a Son Lux record.)

I keep going back to 'Change Your Mind'. With its lilting vocals over wind chimed arpeggios, it's a delicate track on an otherwise assured record. Attaque is a man of many talents, and it'll be interesting to see where his inclinations will take him. It seems he may not even know that part himself. 'Not Going Back', the final song on the album, ends abruptly, almost mid-groove, signalling an ellipsis. Attaque is just getting started.

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