Beatnik Neon was created to explore sonic freedom, and certainly exploration is made clear on the full-length release Yoreself.
Yann McBreton and Nolan Farmer created the project and began pursuing exciting collaborations to create sounds that embraced their appreciation for classical instrumentation and clean synth sounds. Yoreself is as fluid and shifting as their musical taste.
For example, McBreton’s more classical piano and cello parts opensthe album with “Colors”, but this is immediately pulled back on “The Cure”. Here, there are ominous soundscapes that burst into R&B infused beats, never losing a slow sense of mysterious reveal.
But those classical touches are a through-line. The piano melody of “Attic” is almost an interlude — it brings a hint of the song that came before and launches into the song that follows. The piece might bridge the tone, but the composition itself is whole and complete.
Christine Nicole, as a collaborator, showcases her range on this project. Her vocal performance on “Rag and Bone” is sweet and clear, while on “Yourself”, the effects pull her away, then release as she cries out “Do you love me?”. Where the first is light and bouncy, the second sinks into reverberation and sensual saxophone cries.
The album concludes with the cello-heavy “Nocturne”. The low register builds something cinematic and complex. Eventually, the electric guitar bursts in, as it is want to do, and takes the energy to another level. Genre, Beatnik Neon confirm, will not be contained here.