Pitchfork (Website) - "[I]t leaves a lasting impression, like leaving an air conditioned room for a humid street. You want to lay there, curled up, protected by the cavernous world that Beesley creates in INDIGO."
Photographer: Devon Little.
Toronto producer River Tiber brings his voice to the fore on his first solo effort, Indigo. Prior to the album's release, the man born Tommy Paxton-Beesley worked producing beats for rap artists like Jazz Cartier, Ghostface Killah, and Pusha T. However, on this debut, he presents his own vision, which combines the languid, R&B-inflected vibe of fellow producers like BadBadNotGood, Boots, Kaytranada, and Knxwledge with the anxiety-ridden digital soundscapes of Flying Lotus and Radiohead. Highlights like "Motives," "Barcelona," and "Green in Blue" evoke shades of Amnesiac and King of Limbs, comforting and grooving as they meander. The nods to Radiohead even translate to Paxton-Beesley's falsetto, which shares a similar haunting beauty to that of Thom Yorke. When he's not going full R&B-Radiohead, much of Indigo resembles a collection of vignettes that could fit on Frank Ocean's Channel Orange ("Acid Test" and "West"). Those touchstones aside, Indigo remains an ethereal and enveloping daydream. As a classically trained musician, Paxton-Beesley elevates the hazy programming with live instrumentation that swells and sparkles, resulting in ambient atmospherics that provide both icy digitization ("I'm a Stone") and lush warmth ("No Talk"). A pair of fellow Torontonians were also enlisted as vocal foils: soulful bluesman Daniel Caesar soothes on "West," while Tess Parks haunts "Clarity" with her smoky Hope Sandoval-via-Lana Del Rey monotone. Overall, Indigo is a worthwhile exploration through texture that allows the producer-by-day to flex his voice and free the sonic phantoms in his head. ~ Neil Z. Yeung