Ta-ku – “Long Time No See” (Feat. Atu) (Stereogum Premiere)
Perth producer Regan “Ta-ku” Matthews established himself as more than just a SoundCloud presence on his breakout 2013 EP Songs To Break Up To. His gossamer-R&B songs filled with devastated longing struck a chord of heartbreak that reverberated in ever-expanding circles. If you’ve ever needed a record to put on while you work through the loss of a romance, that album truly is the perfect partner for contemplation. But the heart goes on and the heart wants what it wants, so his next EP puts the pieces back together with alluring, sweet simplicity. Songs To Make Up To has all the same haunted ambience as its predecessor, it’s just geared toward renewal instead of rejection. Initial single “Love Again” featured JMSN on gospel-indebted vocals and soulful beat mastermind Sango as a co-producer. The trio functioned in congregation, constructing a hopeful, sweeping song about reconciliation with just a hint of darkness at the end. I think of that song as a boombox-over-the-head moment, a collaborative effort to revive a relationship from amid the ruins of shattered pride.
Today, however, we’re premiering a song that’s the step before that moment. “Long Time No See” encapsulates the instant when you meet someone’s eyes for the first time in months and feel electricity shiver through the air. It’s mostly wordless, gliding along on click-snap beats and shy, plinking piano — a thrilling, balmy bit of hope to soothe crushed egos. He’s joined again by fellow SoundCloud-born R&B minimalist Atu, who helped make “I Miss You More” the gut-wrenching thing it was. But their new collaboration wipes the past clean, gazing toward new possibilities instead of old pain. Listen.
Songs To Make Up To is out 6/12 via Fool’s Gold/Future Classic. Pre-order it here.