Broken Thoughts: Hearing Ghosts

Reportedly, China-born, Los Angeles-based producer and film composer, Keju Luo, has gone through a period of a writer's block since the release of the pretty fine Realign from 2017. Yet, this kind of creative burnout isn't at all detectable in his new album as Broken Thoughts, Hearing Ghosts, whose title comes equated with its content.

Keju went on to a method many electronic composers succumb to at some point, and sampled public domain recordings of works by a classical composers, ranging from Marais to Liszt to Debussy. The result maintains fragments of the melodiousness of the original compositions, but it also becomes something with a soul and substance that is entirely of its own.

The album's classical foundation is recognizable, but it's consistently subtle, and from end to end it haunts the eight songs that comprise its totality, like something analogous to what The Caretaker did with the samples of ballroom pop recordings from the 1930s.

Coupled with the meticulously superimposed electronic production of delicate layers and effective atmospheres, those recordings are give a new life in the hands of Keju Luo, and form a strange, yet, cohesive work of hypnotic and enticing properties.

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