Music Review: Garden Of Delete by Oneohtrix Point Never (2015)

Garden_of_Delete
Release: 13 November 2015

I am not too familiar Daniel Lopatin, so it makes sense that his upcoming electronic album would fly under my radar. I continually would see hype for his new project on various music blogs, but I couldn’t figure out where his fan base came from. They seemed to be everywhere. Everyone seemed to love the man and love his work. As Oneohtrix Point Never he has a reasonably thick discography, releasing seven albums since 2007. Somehow still I never caught wind of his name until this year. With so much buzz, I couldn’t help but picking up his new album Garden Of Delete. While I don’t love this new release, it is very interesting and has a lot that might appeal to those more into Electronica and Experimental music.

What is most interesting about Oneohtrix Point Never‘s new album is that it seems to dance around musical genres. It is firmly situated in the experimental electronic realm but features glimpses of metal, trance and ambient music. It never really catches and doesn’t have many tracks that really standout. Still there were glimpses of things I really liked, but I found the album fluctuated too much from beautiful and atmospheric (though quite dark) to something quite stressful. The second half does improve in consistency and produces something far more listenable. I think the album would benefit by removing the first half and maybe “I Bite Through It”, it would make a much more consistent EP. The things I liked most were when the album began to resemble something I might find in an old John Carpenter soundtrack, unfortunately it fails to hold this style for long enough.

Notable Tracks:

“Sticky Drama” – This track is the only thing I really enjoyed from the first half. I thought the tracks “Ezra” and “Mutant Standard” to have some really cool moments. “Sticky Drama” feels more complete, but probably a bit less experimental. It sticks more to atmospheric electronica that does a far better job at entertaining me than the rest of the first half.

“Child Of Rage” – This track starts the second half off well. It features much more of a soundtrack vibe and some more classical instrumentals overlaid with experimental electronics. It is a decent song that I find fluctuates a lot between great and simply ok. The emotion and atmosphere that Oneohtrix Point Never produces is quite beautiful and frequently reminds me of one of my favorites, Bibio.

“Freaky Eyes” – After the awful first single “I Bit Through It”, “Freaky Eyes” is a nice change. It starts of slow and dark but builds into some fantastic instrumentals. There are times when it reminds me of “Tubular Bells” and others where it channels more of a John Carpenter sound. Overall it’s a pretty good track and probably the most consistent track on the album.

Besides these, there are quite a few decent tracks but nothing phenomenal. If you love experimental electronic music, you’ll probably love this. For a deep listen have a look at “Animals”, “No Good”, and “Lift”. I don’t think Garden Of Delete is an album I’ll come back to very often. It has bits that are very appealing but no one song can hold them for very long. This will be filed away for some future background listening, but I might just choose to stick to John Carpenter soundtracks and Bibio. I think I could only give it 2 out 5 stars.

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