Dom Mino': Time Lapse

Time Lapse is the debut album by Dom Mino' (Domenico Mino') who currently makes his home in London. That his album is released on the Tokyo-based label Schole makes perfect sense, however, given how perfectly Dom's musical sensibility aligns itself to the sweet and lyrical character that's distinguished other recent Japanese electronica releases. Originally from the south of Italy in the region of Puglia, Dom traffics in an innocent and dreamy, ultra-melodic electronic pop style that's pretty close to irresistible. He smartly anchors his instrumentals with lightly funky beats that exude a faint whiff of hip-hop and then weaves sparkling layers of entrancing synth, piano, and guitar melodies overtop (“Crochet” a case in point). Highlights include: “Amelia,” which opens the album with children's laughter and music boxes before abruptly segueing into a lovely trip-hop groove where Dom adds piano to the now-softer music boxes; “Bedtime,” whose simulated cello tones Dom blankets with dancing vibraphone patterns; and “Seed,” which blends whirring beats, softly glimmering melodies, and flowing string tones into a lulling whole. The lovely piano vignette “Tuesday” and fleeting “Broken Lantern” (featuring a Theremin's warble) provide transporting diversions while utterly gorgeous tunes such as “Time Lapse” and “Through a New Horizon” will send you to a Never Never Land from which you'll never want to return. (Akira Kosemura's closing remix of “Scarlett” is good too.) Time Lapse is that rare recording that manages to be accessible with no compromise to its integrity. A lovely collection indeed.

March 2008