Peace Love Weed 3D is the sort of album that’s it’s a true pleasure to discover. It’s an album that is accessable to both the armchair enthusiast as well as the casual listener. While the album blurb would have you believe that it covers ‘instrumental electro-funk, acid, fusion, and italo disco inspired sounds’ it’s somewhat to it’s detriment to try and place it in already defined genres when it really deserves to stand on it’s own. It’s an album that is going to be most enjoyed by those that have a taste for the cinematic as well as a wholly Parisian/Italian sensability. It’s a very well produced album too, with a gritty & chunky sound to it’s production that really stands out in an era of ‘DIY’ album mastering and internet only releases.
First up I must make a confession. I was won over before I even hit play, as each and every of the 10 tracks on offer run for 4 minutes and 20 seconds. While this may sound trivial… it’s nice to see that before any music has even begun that the producer has a sense of humor.
Eliot Lipp has an ear for the cinematic as well as thematic. His track’s ‘Sand Castle’ and ‘Beam Rider’ are both wonderfully suited to those looking for a soundtrack to life while ‘Calling Me’ & album opener ‘Yeah’ offer an upbeat Saturday afternoon vibe that combine both the best of filtered disco influences with a Parisian downtempo vibe that really help to set him apart from others in the field. The inclusion of live instruments brings a welcome human element to proceedings and warmth to the album and is both sparse enough to be desired but never overplayed.
To paraphrase Eliot’s Myspace page ‘Peace Love Weed 3D began as a collection of loose sketches made on various drum machines and synthesizers recorded to tape. This source tape was then cut apart, resampled, and enhanced with the addition of more samples and live instrumentation’. This statement offers both the best and only detractor that I could find from my time spent with PLW3D. The production is fantastic and each track so well rounded that Eliots love of oldschool sounding analog synths is the only thing that seems strangely ‘out of place’ with the sounds of many of his synthetic ‘lead solos’ sounding so sharp as to be almost even out of place with the tracks they are attached to. But given the excellent sound overall, it’s a minor complaint given the effort so evident within the tracks from the intelligent programming of drums to the well crafted sequences on display.
So while I’ve been writing this, and heaping prase on the production and effort put into sequencing and production it must however be said that sometimes it’s raw emotion (and not technical prowess) that is the standout and with PLW3D that track is the album closer ‘Beam Rider’. Again to paraphrase his myspace page ‘I made the Beamrider single while imagining the tracks were for a sci-fi/thriller soundtrack’ and it’s couldnt be better said. If ever there was a track that belonged in the next TRON film, this is it. It’s the raw atmosphere that this particular tune carries that puts it up there as a track that stands out as something special. If thats’s not enough to sell you on tracking this album (or single) down, I don’t know what is. A standout finish to a truly enjoyable album.
While it’s not without it’s personal and particular quirks, Peace Love Weed 3D is a truly memorable 43 minutes and 20 seconds. There’s something to get any Intelligent Dance Music enthusiast excited; and certainly does Eliot Lipp’s reputation no harm as an excellent and thoughtful producer that is highly underatted in a scene that truly needs more producers like him.