Review: The Kendal Mintcake – The Kendal Mintcake’s Insignificant Digits

It’s like a teleportation gone wrong. Upward synthesiser cascades make me feels as though I’m hurtling through an inter-dimensional gateway – swirling past my head like gigantic hoops of light – and immediately I’m hauled away from gravity and tangible living. Yet as the electronics pull back and cast me into the void, I remain without destination; cheaply imitative cellos and pianos clump together and tilt arbitrarily, skewing my sense of orientation and shifting every time I feel close to recalibrating. It’s uneasy, homesick; growing from a few strands to a whole tangle of tones that creep in and out of eachother like a worm blanket, held back from chaos through bell tones that metronomically slave-drive the smog into rhythmic mutations. Insignificant Digits immediately illustrates itself as a mysterious somewhere else – a hidden glitch in the space-time membrane, trapped as a nameless nothing between two universes.

As such, the second half’s introduction of a remedial major key and inevitable repetition is something of a coming home, even if the whole experience remains deeply surreal. “Twenty” feels like driving down an infinite, straight runway – a simple drum loop powers a quivering synth cycle, and the whole thing quickly begins to form into a self-generative onward surge, flecked with colour and psychedelic light patterns. “Three” is the point at which the album comes to point of stillness, although it almost feels too utopian to be entirely trusted. Melody motifs dance around like dragonflies, as a two-chord piano plants tiny ripples in a lake of immaculate blue and breadth; my brain begins to catch up with the disorientation of the past half hour as I drift into an amber sunset, and I return to perceiving the world as distinct shapes and tangible sensory matter.