Review

Lefto Early Bird

Motherless Father

Brownswood • 2024

Brownswood, the label from Gilles Peterson, introduces a new family member: Stéphane Lallemand, whose mixing skills under the artist name Lefto Early Bird should be known worldwide, took his time with the production of his second album. But not involuntarily, as the Belgian national says in the press release. After all, the pandemic with its worldwide effects had forced him to stop. However, he used the time for his album more passively, mainly to process the emotions that the pandemic had triggered in him. The result (as Lefto himself puts it) is a kind of »pre-club album«. Those familiar with the DJ and his numerous radio shows know that his sets offer an (almost) unique range of genres. »Motherless Father« also reflects this, of course. Jazz meets downbeat, deep house meets electronic. Again and again, a touch of the avant-garde drips over the tracks and provides fresh surprises. The guest list also gives the album a strong character. Lefto’s own spoken word vocals not only convey intimate messages, but are also a driving element of the groove. The track »Live In Darkness And Wait For Brighter Days« shows how well technoid deep house can be combined with jazz. Lefto Early Bird’s work as a whole shows a great interest in a wide musical spectrum. On tracks like »The Elegance Of A Body« he stays more than true to the four to the floor.