Jeff Lane is the man behind Tereshkova, whose record Bubblegum Études is the 21st release by SØVN Records. Jeff has recently moved to Seattle, WA from Portland, OR, where he started his own label Never Anything Records back in 2015, creating a gathering point for local ambient and experimental sounds. Bubblegum Études is a record which was recorded all along during those inspiring Portland years, between 2016 and 2019.
Listening to the opening track Hawaii , which spans over the whole side A of the cassette tape, is like taking a stroll through a funfair. Surprise is lurking behind every corner, and every other minute the mood is switched towards completely unexpected extremes: from cool jazz vibes to tribal echoes and futuristic oscillations in outer space, then falling back on a beach in Hawaii. And then, of course, all the way up once again to the starry sky with a ukulele-shaped roller coaster.
Side B opens with Noir Installation and Snowstorm, which blend MF Doom-esque sampling with exotic soundscapes à la Mike Cooper. The same mood is retained throughout the two final tracks, Reflection Pond and Lovestruck, two hallucinated trips through Polynesian nights which never scare, but rather bring about a sense of fun and playfulness, a “let’s do it again” feeling.
The packaging for the release indeed tries to play along this mood: the cassette tape is contained within a case built out of old LEGO pieces, found who-knows-where on the shores of ever-present childhood. But this time, the LEGO pieces are glued together and can’t be reused: a final playful prank, which turns on its head the nature of LEGO and probably will leave some listeners disappointed… after all, what’s better than listening to music while playing with LEGO, dreaming of Hawaii?
released May 8, 2019
Made by Jeff Lane
Mastered by Philippe Vandal