Software Wolf makes a mood shift of an album. From the beginning of sadness to the end of perfect contentment, ‘Spit & Image’ works to find ease. This effortlessly blends samples and electronics into a coherent whole. Oftentimes the stutter-stop work of the tracks gives the music a greater sense of drama. Multiple layers of sound work together and find themselves chopped up, rearranged into new breathing organisms. Yes this can be a bit disorientating but the narrative from sad to happy keeps things in perspective.
‘A History of Strongmen’ opens it with bleak melodies. Eventually it builds itself into a frenzy turning into staccato hits. The transformation is jarring. Yet it feels appropriate. For the cryptically titled ‘Flower beds of dead dog heads’ things get much sadder. Here a rudimentary beat gathers itself into a full force. Little snippets of what’s to come inject themselves into the mix. They come to overwhelm the mix. The classical sample gives a sense of dread. Software Wolf keeps the usage of external effects to a bare minimum letting the repetition of the sample do most of the work as a minor attempt at a beats tries (and fails) to build up. ‘Harbin 1909’ begins the shift into a happier place. Little stuttering melodies float through. How the stutter manages to sink into the mind is incredible.
‘Smiles of the Unstoppable’ ends it in a very happy place. The happiness is fascinating in this final track. Besides being the best track on the album it forces the listener to re-listen to the entire album. By offering such a pleasant happy melody with the same sound it shows that signs or hints of this happiness exist in each previous track.