Twenty five year old Los-Angeles-based producer / multi-instrumentalist Miguel Baptista Benedict apparently spent the years spanning 2008-2012 self-producing no less than 25 albums. After initially sending a couple of his tracks to Flying Lotus on a whim back in 2008, this debut album on Brainfeeder ‘Super(b)-Child-Ran’ sees Benedict and FlyLo collecting together ten tracks from six of his completed albums. It’s certainly not easy to categorise what Benedict is doing here, with gentle guitar-led passages suddenly leading into jarring walls of processed vocals and distorted electronics, and indeed the fact that these ten tracks were drawn from disparate albums often leads to some fairly abrupt transitions. Opening track ‘Phemy’ lures the listener in gently at first as delicate piano melodies weave a melancholic intro to ‘Subordinate CEO’s glittering collision of psychedelic flute textures and chiming guitars, the distorted horns building towards a Sun-Ra-esque crescendo as wordless backing vocals rise up against the sparse drumming.
From there on though, things start getting considerably more spiky and unpredictable, with ‘Oil Free Acne Scrub’ unleashing some curiously post-hardcore guitar and drum atmospheres that suddenly crash into a mass of squalling electronic-processing and the kind of brutal, shearing power noise you’d expect from the likes of Wolf Eyes as frigid bursts of DSP-ed noise take things out into icy isolationist territory. Elsewhere, ‘Blink 192’ manages to chart similarly jarring and abrasive territory as arrhythmic drum machines kick and sputter against sudden bursts of rewound cassette noise and buzzing bass synths, the entire track finally reaching its seemingly inevitable breakdown amidst a shearing wall of digital timestretching. There are certainly plenty of undeniably brilliant moments on show here, but taken in its entirety, ‘Super(b)-Child-Ran’ makes for a somewhat difficult and often jarring listen.