Drifting through Turn Tail rings up twin feelings of bizarreness and fervency. The Brooklyn based artist tucks microcosms of formidable sounds inside each of the five irrefutable pieces in the EP – sounds that invigorated from different genres and mostly illustrate the histrionic aspect of music. From plucks of a miniature harp swimming in a distant drone to samples of screeches heard from the Jefferson platform, Turn Tail is an ornate reminder that it’s alright if you feel messed up.
Sreym Mctim’s debut album in 2019, Split Ends, Split Head was a sonically tempered representation filled with complex rhythmic phrases, ardently whispered cantillation and fastidiously restrained noise. Split Ends, Split Head’s sound was immensely influenced by indie-pop music and the sound of East Asia. Its dark and coquettish persona was playful, enjoyable, and refreshing. But with Turn Tail all these elements have become even rigorous.
With every project Sreym has put out, there has been a distinct change in the playfulness of his sound. Each more intriguing than the last one. In Turn Tail too, every song tackles composition in a different way. The EP’s first track, Jigsaw Piece Flaw, a pizzicato pluck heavy track with loose strings and samples taken from field recordings is a striking introduction of the EP. It sets the mood for what to come and expect afterward. While it’s not staggering what comes next to Jigsaw Piece Flaw, the EP takes a surprising turn with Lockers. Lockers’ kaleidoscopic groove is decidedly reminiscent of the early 10s and late 00s electronic dance music (mostly house and techno) with a well-pronounced vocal and twisting percussion and bass. The mellowed keys at the end of Armadillo adds an absolute bliss and is undoubtedly the most fascinating joint in the project.
Turn Tail offers a spacious array of sound combining elements from a different genres of music. But at some point, it gets way out of its purpose with the vocal performances and mixes. While the idea that revolves around the EP is not new by any means and artists like Tim Hecker and Arca has already given what Sreym Hctim brings in Turn Tail, it definitely adds a strong mark in Sreym Hctim’s discography. But as primary as some of the sounds in Turn Tail have been, Sreym Hctim’s dark and mysterious take on the EP is definitely worth loving and it’d be exciting to see what comes next.