Wednesday 18 October 2017


Firstly this sounds like waking up from a night of forgotten but disturbing dreams in an ant colony. Something about the beginnings of this track just sound like that, the strange alien opening up of the synths, a reluctant fanfare, the sound of an orchestra tuning up and then fading to these subterranean falling-away sounds, spooky slices of organ-esque synth, wobbly, sheet-with-cutout-eyes-ghost-costume-ish, like a 16-bit depiction of a graveyard. We are in the ant colony and it's huge and filled with intricate little details, the tunnels, the foodstores, the ants themselves rushing through the earthen tunnels propelling themselves along in tweakish meanderings stopping to frantically touch antennae withanother of their kind. And you're there, taller than an ant, but still tiny and small enough to be inside this ant empire. The ticking clock of synth, the rich wonky descending downcast bleeps that ping a signal diminishing in strength as you attempt to escape but head deeper into the tangle of tunnels; it counts down, giving this track a decided sense of urgency.

And this, 'Tenebris' – which is Latin, the ablative form of tenebrae meaning darkness – is created by French producer TÉNÉRÉ. A formic frenzy of footwork, the beat alternately booms below with bassy kicks and scuttles above with insectoid hi-hat scuttlings and the rapid rattling thwacks of snare, and occasional clusters of drum machine bloop-boops tumble through like accidentally looking at somebody for too long and then turning suddenly away. Hollow reverbing neon columns, or columns miniature, like glass straws, give it a sense of futuristic grime coldness, as the beat continues its syncopation; then, then those graveyard chords appear again, but this time as stewards of melancholy ambience, not spooky but wide, sometimes muffled sometimes sharp, careering through with a sort of hopelessness, blank and vacant, which helps paint the unreal walls of this otherworldly den of insects, and coupled with the beat, effuses a sort of resolute determination, a must-do of escaping, of feeling frustrated within your own skin, vigorously worried, the clasp of clawing hands for something recognisable in the dark below ground.

  • 🔔 This lovely slice of music is taken from TÉNÉRÉ's Lux In Tenebris, a two-track offering whose other track 'In Lucem' is a warmer, slower, more sultry number than 'Tenebris'. You can stream and/or purchase this by clicking this hyperlink.
  • 🔔 The artwork for the release comes was created by Kinu Kamura, a fitting illustration almost in monochrome that captures an inherent bleakness as well as brightness that dwells at the heart of this track.

TÉNÉRÉ Internet Presence ☟

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