Elias Raam (RAAM) is a fairly unknown character in the world of electronic music. Other than knowledge of his Swedish roots, and the fact that he is Spotify’s licensing director, Raam has revealed very little about himself. Yet since 2014, he has been showcasing his abilities by releasing a string of EPs and singles on his own RAAM Records label, with fellow Scandinavian Baba Stiltz remixing his track “Hidden” from the RAAM 002 EP.
All of RAAM’s work follows a particular path; water-tight production and a prominent outer-space feel. “Unfinished Diary” is no exception to his impressive arsenal. Although it has, in some places, a rough and raw exterior, this EP manages to convey its inner emotion and feeling. “Vemod“, the second track of the EP, is the softer interior of the release and uses beatless, spiralling tones to pull us into a deep dive through time. Although “Vemod” is a delicate opener, it would have been best deployed at the EP’s beginning, to build a platform from which the crunchier tracks could work. By contrast, Raam’s chosen opener, “Blame“, dons the familiar tape-deck lo-fi house style, which uses static noise to add a layer of context to the record. He executes this style perfectly, adding sharp stabs of the piano and distant crowd jeers to pad out the track. That said, “Blame” could benefit from a more varied journey, as the beat remains too static throughout.
The remaining two tracks, “Endurer” and “Regrets“, showcase RAAM’s production talent. The growling basslines and subtle chord changes in Endurer render it the ideal soundtrack for a moody and purposeful walk around a city block. Finally, “Regrets” transforms our moody walk into a thoughtful plod, with a funkier bassline and shimmering piano riff highlighting the futility of our sulkiness. Sounds of a distant jeering crowd return in “Regrets” to serve a different purpose – to remind us that company and companionship is never too far away.
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