Sometimes you just can’t help but marvel at the human brain, in this case, that belonging to French electro-whizz Pierre-Antoine Grison, who with good reason has become a welcome mainstay of the Ed Banger stable since the release of his first EP in 2004. Partly the result of classical hands on ears open schooling the grey matter resting between his ears provides a complex breeding ground for musical notation, citation and exploration. And when not hiding behind the pseudonym Krazy Baldhead, the one time Parisian jazzman turned producer takes cranial shelter behind the expansive warmth of an illuminated laptop.
‘The B-Suite’, Mr. Baldhead’s debut LP, is an ordered collection of sixteen pieces separated into four movements that with some help from Brooklyn rapper TES, Japan’s Mademoiselle Yulia, Big-O, Outlines and Miami Francophile Beat Assailant, takes the listener on a largely instrumental era defining journey that blurs the lines of distinction between sega-electro, jazz and hip-hop. To comprehensively unpick the individual threads and themes of each movement would demystify the mechanics of Mr. Baldhead’s epic, unrelenting and intricate fifty-minute marathon and in any case prove almost impossible.
That said, each movement, as expansive as all four are, contain an array of common denominators; 1st Movement begins and ends with the schizophrenic swirl of an Eastern European fairground organ, 2nd Movement reveals a hidden urbanised level for Sonic the Hedgehog to chase jazz top-lines instead of gold rings, 3rd Movement controls a stop start riot of aggression while 4th Movement provides proving ground for a Mensa designed Tetris building block.
There’s more than a lot to take in, but nothing that’s left to chance, as each individual movement possesses a faultless sense of innate direction. Mechanized beats, apprehensive bass lines and synthesized strings, together with an impervious foresight, work almost against the odds in joining the dots that point to a constant shift of dynamics. Although carefully monitored, ‘The B-Suite’ is by no means a whimsical Saturday night in for the nothing better to do’s but a distinguished body of work that’s held together and made successful through stubborn innovation, bloody-minded ingenuity and a near visionary belief.