Theory Therapy’s first cassette release comes from Concave Reflection aka Tommy Paslaski, one-third of Chicago-based group Purelink.
Calm but rarely completely beatless, The Best People Are Like Water hovers in the interstice between the club and the comedown. The tape consists of 11 immersive tracks that split the difference between atmospheric downtempo and hypnagogic ambient. Side A is predominantly beat-based, channeling the best elements of ’90s chillout room music, while side B is a more celestial affair — the aural equivalent of noctilucent clouds swirling slowly in the sky.
The album displays many of the qualities found in Purelink's music — syncopated breakbeats, pristinely mixed drums and airy atmospherics — but an added sense of intimacy runs across its 11 tracks. Paslaski has described his process as "layering and layering until I have a cohesive thought, then sometimes playing my loop pedal cello stuff over it and seeing where it takes me". This improvisational approach translates into an album that feels aleatory, organic and extremely personal, as though it was produced by some arcane and abstract method, like wind roiling midnight air or slowlycrystallising water.
The Best People Are Like Water was mastered by Joseph Buchan aka Other Joe. Ben (kindtree) consulted on mixing for the A side. All tracks were written and produced by Tommy Paslaski.
Artwork by Kata Szász