EP Review: Turtle – Push
Posted by Greg Murray
Push is the latest EP by Glaswegian producer Jon Cooper, released under his moniker Turtle. These five tracks vibe with video game sounds, icily-euphoric electronic folds, and the hypnotic drips of very calming beats.
Turtle’s social media presence is winningly sparse compared to the majority of independent artists who still clamber over each others digital corpses for the most ‘likes’ or ‘follows’. His Facebook page is mysteriously bare, and it doesn’t seem like he feels any desire to cram details about what hipster coffee he’s drinking right now into 140 characters. This is oddly refreshing. The never-curtained internet windows placed in front of our favourite artists are nice a lot of the time, but Turtle’s laconic (and probably not even on purpose) approach suits the misty ambiance of Push.
The warbling synth lines of the EP’s first track Unity lead you through a tight, dark tunnel that opens out to a cavernous space of glittering, flashing colours and lush sounds before track two turns the blissful atmosphere on its unsuspecting head to take you to dissonant territory. It’s called Threshold and it features the most intense array of grinding sounds the release has to offer (including a very unsettling riff on tuned percussion).
Forgive is led by repetitive, expertly processed vocal hooks, and sinks into your ear with the help of Cooper’s very natural song-structuring abilities. The pretty synths are back in Rivers, and they are danced to and fro by tugging basslines and the eventual, dramatic entrance of a string section. This song is maybe the biggest highlight and it sounds like it could be the intro music to a David Attenborough series about the arrival of peaceful, lovely aliens.
Last up is the title track and it continues the climax set up by Rivers, with straight-up danceable grooves. The club-banger aspect of the song is pulled from the brink of debauchery by the sad, pining tones of the synths, and a spoken word sample about living well with love as your motivation and not fear.
Overall, Push is an explorative, yet short burst of ambient release. The sound beds which fizz and pulse throughout are great, and Turtle’s skill of inciting emotion with sound is one that carry from his work in TV music, but there’s still remains a tickling sense of better, grander things to come.