Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

The Best Albums of 2012, Edition Three: Clams Casino

Note: Unfortunately, some overly-protective copyright police are removing links to this all over. It’s a mixtape, so that’s to be expected. You can still find a way to download this if you know where to look.

Instrumental Mixtape Two — Clams Casino

The surprise hit of last year is back with fuzzy charm and sampled density. “Palace”, the album opener, is the instrumental beat from Clams Casino’s production of A$AP Rocky’s track of the same name. It’s heavy, and it’s enormous. I can’t overstate how huge this track is.

The rest of the album continues the style established by Clams Casino’s release last year, only a little darker. Every sample seems to slither its way through the layers without ever staying still. Take “The Fall” for example, with its bird samples and male vocals colliding, without either taking precedence. “Amor Fati” impossibly winds itself forwards and backwards at the same time. Nothing stays still. Everything is moving.

That is until you hit “Kissing on My Syrup”, which jolts you back into the real world with its microsecond-precise 4/4 beat. It’s what breaks up the latter half of the album, cutting through like a sharp hit of lime in a gin and tonic.

The album closer, “I’m God”, is the mellowing of what you’ve just encountered. It’s just as layered and just as fuzzy, but it’s less dense. The sampled vocal aptly encourages “deep breaths”, and that’s what I’ll take before running through the album again, and again.