Back in early 2021, electronic musicians Eve Maret and Adrienne Franke released the track “Space Freeway,” an immersive track that evoked dance music, krautrock and some intensely feel good vibes. Individually, both artists have created wonderfully enjoyable compositions themselves. If you’ve not heard Maret’s Stars Aligned or Franke’s Falling Leaves, add those to your queue now. With “Space Freeway,” it seemed the two would be working together on even more music and that was an incredibly exciting proposition.
That possibility is now a reality, as their self-titled collaboration, Eardrummer, is now available. Two years of anticipation can be a devastating force of disappointment but Maret and Franke have managed to concoct a blend of influences mixed with their own personal styles that makes for a riveting listen. The aforementioned “Space Freeway” and “Ultra” kick off the record with rock solid krautrock intonations but the record really starts to show itself with “Planet Orange” – a swirl of glitched out beats, synth overtures and thick bass. The duo invites Julia Meredith and Proteins of Magic to contribute saxophone and flute on “Hibiscus” and “Ode” respectively; welcome additions to the already delightful tracks.
Collaboration can be tough. Often the results are a bifurcated divide of each individuals distinct styles. Maret and Franke manage avoid this trap as no one track feels like it belongs to only one of the contributors. That is to say, you can’t call one track “A Maret track” and another “A Franke track” – even if you do hear some of their familiar synth sounds mixed in. Eardrummer is enjoyably danceable and teeming with optimism in parts, while being atmospheric and a little dark at other times. It’s an immersive journey and I’m happy to take it on repeat.