Modular Slop by Paul De Rita sounds exactly like what the name evokes. It’s a short smear of sporadic and instrumental psychedelic rock music. Clocking in at around fifteen minutes, De Rita’s trip is a quick one. With some pretty weird album art that is worth the look, this EP is a sweet microdose into a solo artist’s mind.
“Modular Slop (Intro)” kicks us into gear with an eerie and progressive sound, like a strange space circus rolling into town. Dissonance rings over the jaded rhythms while all sorts of sounds bump and bop around each other. It all comes to a close as the sounds melt together and drain away into the silence that will birth the next track.
“Do You Dub?” asks the age-old question, and De Rita’s answer is: Yes? This dub isn’t as rigid as you’d expect. Don’t get me wrong, your head will be bobbing and grooving to da rhythms, but sounds of sax, wild sweeps, and wet reverb will slowly sweep your feet from under you. The ending to this track is trippy. As you float calmly through this river of sound, it unexpectedly drops into a waterfall of pitch that bends your mind.
The pitch shifting and modulation are really cool aspects of this EP. De Rita takes a delicate guitar piece and drenches it with modulation to create “Everything is Somewhere.” It’s simple and stripped down. A few samples run faintly in the background to add to the mood. It’s a short piece, and my takeaway from the release. The tremolo bend at the end will give your leg a little twitch.
The lightness is followed by the punchiest track on the EP. “LED” is a song appropriately titled, as it’s hard rock riff and drive make it the heaviest song on the release. Although the riff is definitely written heavily, it sounds a bit thin in the recording. It does give the classic Hendrix single-coiled vibe which is sweet. The solo sections of this song are killer. Think, Mike McCready’s take on Hendrix. Cool idea for this track, but I feel like the short instrumental execution of it undermined the musicality. This one could have maybe gotten away with being a “fully” written song with vocals and more developed parts.
It is followed quickly by two short tracks, “Holy Haunted House (Interlude)” and “Modular Slop (Outro).” The former sounds like a super bad trip through the haunted house of your mind. Modulating synths make this part of the trip rather uncomfortable. There’s this unhinging urgency that unexpectedly grabs you by the wrist and drags you through the scary soundscape. Just as you become more and more unhinged, it releases you into a welcomed abyss. The latter is the outro to the album which at this point has come full circle with the title track. It’s a strange ending to the EP. Kind of random, kind of makes you wonder if there’s more coming. It dips into the same well as the opening track for sure, and is quick and to the pointless.
We should thank Paul De Rita for cutting out a piece of his mind and serving it us on a tab of acid. If you’re into the trip, the Montreal man has a fresh release for you to sink your mind into called Syzygy. This EP is just as short and just as peculiar. It’s a different spectrum from the same ray of light that is Paul De Rita.
Written by Ben Cornel
*edited by Mike Milito