Mizo’s new EP Icy Wyrm drops tomorrow on Eatbrain and it’s a release full of twists and turns, not to mention Mizo’s usual twisted bass. It wouldn’t be right to say there’s a softer side to Mizo, as all four tracks on this EP are heavy and scorching, but it seems the Russian is playing with more ambient tones along with his usual hard-edged neurofunk and cinematic sound design.
The intros to both Icy Wyrm’s title track and the second track “Intergalactic” have more ambient, ethereal tones than fans have previously seen from Mizo, and these melodies are coiled around the main tracks once the beat drops. A big surprise also lies in “Intergalactic,” which features a vocal from HELO, a vocalist who so far has only worked on Eatbrain tracks. Another surprise is “Bad Form” which has a strong hip hop vibe in both its vox and in its beats.
Bassrush managed to grab the premiere of the final track on the EP, “Desert Trail.” This track probably has the most ethereal and, well, pretty, melody work on Icy Wyrm. Featuring a female vox and what sound like actual physical horns, the opening melody has a clear Middle Eastern influence, hence the “desert” theme. The horns are not foghorns but they definitely add a bit of analog warmth to the track. It’s an interesting juxtaposition to have such techy synths, beats and snares along with ancient melodies, tambla drums and horns.
Said techy beats and synths do carry the haunting feel of the more classic melody as it waxes and wanes throughout the track so they hardly clash. Rather, this track conjures a sort of dystopian landscape where the ancient echoes of melodies and peoples past are carried through the sands and winds and whip their way even into the modern machines chugging along through said ancient landscape. While the sounds of this track may be different than what Mizo has previously done, that image is certainly on-brand.
It’s been a while since Mizo has released an EP on Eatbrain but his return to the label with Icy Wyrm shows his evolution as a musician and that he’s still got the creative chops to move both hearts and feet. As neurofunk goes into its next phase, artists like Mizo are leading the charge.
Icy Wyrm drops on Eatbrain tomorrow, March 13. Click here for purchase info.