n.stal – La Plage [Les Yeux Orange]

n.stal - la plage

Parisian tastemaking collective Les Yeux Orange (soundcloudare a mainstay in the international electronic music scene. From DJ sets and party promotion to running a far-reaching and deeply trusted blog, the crew have participated and earned their stripes in every level of music curation within our scene. It should be of no surprise, then, that LYO chose managing a record label as the next arena to conquer.

The label arm of LYO formally launched in June of this year with an EP from Portland, Oregon-based producer Wav Fuzz. The Cold Fresh Air EP served as an intriguing reveal for LYO as an imprint; reflecting their ultra-cool, stylish and polished aesthetic both in the physical packaging of the record as well as the sounds. The release was a clever amalgamation of indie dance, house, and new school Detroit Techno styles, resulting in a hazy, modern and groovy four tracker of an EP. However, today we turn our attention to the vinyl label’s sophomore EP, which this time comes courtesy of Parisian compatriot N.Stal.

The release, titled La Plage, is replicates the chic, conceptual packaging of the first drop: hip color-printed full jackets, impeccable design, and smartly cut center labels. Whereas the Northwestern sunset imagery of Cold Fresh Air prefaced the sonic feeling of that EP, La Plage is instilled with a dreamy, blue, and, at times aquatic, vibe. The art design in LYO’s vinyl packaging is incredibly deliberate, and this should not go unnoticed!

Anyway, the title track, “La Plage”, gets the mood started with a techno-influenced structure laced with hypnotic synth work. The track peaks via some climactic layering including pitched vox and a cosmic guitar riff that arrives in time to close things out. “Entre Les Étoiles” continues the atmospheric feel of the first track, this time joining marimbas, string sections, and deep pads with a slightly brooding bassline and a mean kick & clap. The closing track, “Sans Lumière”, is the darkest track of the effort, which is unsurprising considering the name of the piece. The chord progression is menacing in mood, again placed over a backbone of techno-inspired 909 beats.

La Plage certainly evokes a consistent emotion throughout the three cuts. It’s reflective, moody and intensely layered, placing you directly in a breezy, but also dark, beach of an environment. Stylistically – similarly to LYO001 – the influence of indie dance, house and techno are quite apparent in the arrangements. As suggested by the art design as well as their track record as blog curators, LYO are cohesive in their their curation. As a result, La Plage is a tight, conceptual (and visually great-looking) package that should please fans of pensive tech-driven beats.

Martín Miguel