That Guy: “Patterns In The Sky” trades in imagery and evocation

That Guy’s sound can be compared to a fusion between surgical explorations by Autechre and elastic soundscapes by Bonobo. But he, of course, is in a genre of his own. Combining intricate beat-work with unresolved synth melodies that keep on swirling into inter-winding sonic tangles, That Guy creates a unique mesh of sound which is as abstract and experimental as it is cerebral and astute. That Guy is an electronic musician that specializes in producing chill music. He works with loops, a sampled guitar and synthesizer programs like Massive by Native Instruments. He creates all of his music production in Maschine and started making electronic music in late 2015. Ever since then That Guy has been working on developing and growing as an artist.

On listening to his latest album, Patterns In The Sky”, you will hear the hushed chords slowly ebbing beyond peripheral and incidental sounds, while the touch of the twinkling keys keeps the neurons firing within the beat. You will experience a play on the rhythm, first shortening the moments then stretching out the time.

There is plenty of complexity within That Guy’s simple yet precise approach on this album. Synthetic bits dance within the sequenced model, and although some sounds may seem at first glance lawless and chaotic, the connoisseurs of chill and ambient will reassemble them into a story inside their heads.

What I also appreciated in That Guy’s sound is his particular attention to the developing melody, its musicality and very fragile tone. An example of this is a piece titled “Morph” where the atmospheric textures are lingering in the background of the track.

Picking up on standout tracks such as “Release”, “Patterns In The Sky”, “Perceptual Constructs” and “Delicate”, it becomes clear that That Guy’s is one of the most promising unsigned artists on the chill block.

On this album the tempos are a bit more down-tempo, but the bright melodies are present along with simple rhythm structures. That Guy also has a knack for counter-melody and harmony, resulting in highly listenable and engaging tracks.

The beats seemingly serve both as pulse and embellishments, as well as heavy-handed rhythmic percussion when needed. This can be an advantageous if you’re growing weary of the mono-thematic rhythm workings of some electronic producers. With his sense of melody and pioneering spirit I think there’s a good chance That Guy could become one of the heavy-weights in his chosen genre.

The melodies are delicate and intricate, not overbearing. There’s nothing extraneous in That Guy music. No flourishes or pointless breakdowns, no pointless beat pattering masquerading as experimental. All of which makes his approach on “Patterns In The Sky” so appropriate. It’s a recording that doesn’t pride itself on gimmick. Rather, it’s a very listenable and emotional work that trades in imagery and evocation, and that it does very well.


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