The Pandora EP is Syrinx’s first album for the Beijing-based digital label Science Label and features a remix by Eduardo De La Calle. The record, which exists somewhere between ambient techno and house, is the artist’s first non-vinyl release and was created using a mixture of Reason, Ableton, a Blofeld synth, a Novation Drum Station and Spark.
The opening track builds subtly. “Hades” manages to create a pleasant feeling of analogue warmth, especially in the pervasive granular crackles in the higher frequencies. Percussive parts enter with a mature stylistic control, emphasizing slow textual changes and making use of very gradual dynamic arcs.
“Sol’s” pounding four-to-the-floor kick drum is nicely rounded and creates a comfortable platform for the rest of the track. As with the rest of the album, this piece is harmonically static – though this is perhaps more stylistic conformity than anything else. Again, interest is generated through subtle opening and closing of filters on arpeggiated synth lines and the dropping in and out of rhythmic elements.
“Rhea” and “Pandora” pick up the energy levels, featuring filtered chords and strings – elements Syrinx seems to have a particular fondness for. Although also containing a predictably repetitive kick drum, the long delayed samples in the “Rhea” re-edit take us into a metallic world that feels more improvisational than previous tracks, forcing the listener to adopt a more contemplative attitude towards the unfolding textures.
The release has been produced with care. The bass elements thud nicely, distortions are tasteful and filters are skilfully manipulated. Spatially the album sometimes feels a little confined, with the exception of the “Rhea” re-edit, whose delayed inserts give a pronounced and refined depth to proceedings.
The Pandora EP feels like fairly safe loungey house music done well. While remaining broadly in one atmospheric environment, the warm, lilting tones make for a pleasant if occasionally soporific listening experience.