One of the reason’s that Jimmy Asquith’s Lobster Theremin empire has not yet gone stale is his keen nose for fresh talent. Lobster Theremin, Mörk and Distant Hawaii seem to be endlessly unearthing new artists, and often do those producers the good turn of supporting them on follow-up records. Surely one of Asquith’s greatest coups was securing Talk To Me You’ll Understand, a track by newcomer Ross From Friends that first appeared on the internet last year. A hint of this track’s unusual power can be found in the original upload, which has almost been listened to 100,000 times, an ungodly amount for a lofi house tune from an unknown producer.
Though it took a year to get from Soundcloud to wax, the pure pleasure of the song remains undulled. It’s a delicate slice of house, all mucky hammering kicks and gentle synthwork, unapologetically sincere in its lovelorn warmth. The pitched-down vocal sample adds a bittersweet edge, but here it’s all about the searing electric guitar of the breakdown, evoking a thousand sunsets and heartbreaks. It’s one of the first truly timeless tunes to come out of house’s lofi camp.
The record’s other tracks could never quite reach these lofty heights, but they do a solid job melting sleazy RnB in a gritty club mould. Getting’ It Done adds a clattering rhythm and dense fuzz to John White’s exaggerated romantic jam, the drums shifting cannily between a slo-mo swoon and a dry mechanical workout. Bootman is softer and more seductive, welding an intimate croon from The Rude Boys to a slippery bassline and another satisfyingly detailed rhythm. Almost three years in, the Lobster juggernaut keeps knocking it out of the park.