We don’t know much about Person of Interest. Over a share of records on the L.I.E.S. axis, the anonymous producer has mostly concocted gritty basement techno, lofi sounds for anxious souls. An appearance earlier this year with J Albert on Exotic Dance Records was more colourful but still gave little away about the person behind the music. Now the producer arrives at Clone’s excellent Royal Oak imprint on very different form, paying homage to classic house sounds. This Person of Interest’s music is just as good, and a lot easier to love.
For the NOYFB EP (None Of Your Fucking Business, as far as we can tell), Person of Interest keeps the fuzz and cluttered drumwork of their earlier work and loads the arrangements with bright, cheap melodies that go down a treat. The overall effect is something like Nu Groove stewed in a puddle – classic house with the contrast turned up way too high.
The title track serves as a mission statement for the dramatic shift in Person of Interest’s mood. Celestial strings rain down over light, brittle drumwork, each new melody thin, high and engaging. The accompanying Straight2Tape Edit changes more than you’d expect from an edit, adding a dose of club energy with its scuffed kicks and technoid alarm synths. The B-side continues to mine a brighter sound, with Pareidolia offering the loosest vibe of the record. It’s an immediate highlight, sporting charmingly clumsy keys and detailed percussion locked in the high-end, but an unsettling vocal sweep in the track’s second half adds a necessary touch of tension.
These three tracks show an appealing new melodic side to Person of Interest, but it’s on final cut Carmen that we see how this sound can work best in the club. The big, clattering drums pack a punch here, underscored by a throbbing bassline and another set of dreamy, generous melodies. There’s always been a remarkable skill in Person of Interest’s manipulation of raw, messy components, but the addition of all this colour makes for music with a warm, beating heart.