Eric Lau - Examples
First Word Records
U.K. producer Eric Lau makes a pulsating return with his latest instrumental full-length, Examples. This new album continues the beat-tape esthetics that he has been known for, filled with sketches and ideas that have been percolating within his producer’s mind. Highlighting his penchant for rhythmic jazz samples and vocal chops, Examples takes the listener on the perfect headphone excursion that keeps the neck snapping.
“New Speed” breaks open the album with a syncopation of sounds and rhythms that has one foot in the recording studio and the other in space. Following that is the amply named “Lift Off”, a song that nudges closer to a live session in flight. The dirty loops of “Rahw” and “Spooky Fonk” are reminiscent of the compositions that graced J Dilla’s Ruff Draft tape. Raw and unapologetic, they stand to show Lau’s grit on the pads. “4 De La” plays familiar De La Soul melodies from their AOI era, while “Can I Get a Witness” chops up Q-Tip’s familiar vocals to help punctuate this message to fans: better recognize the skills. While most of the album continues to be filled with mid-tempo gems, one of my favorite tracks was “Masamba”, a bossa nova flavored tune that can transition easily from dance floor to dance floor. DJs take note.
Although there is a lack of variety on Examples, there is still a considerable amount of music to satisfy longtime Eric Lau fans and beat aficionados. Lau continues to nurture a sound that stays timeless and well traveled with each release. I suggest picking up the limited edition yellow vinyl from First Word Records too. You won’t regret it.