An instrumental duo consisting of a bassist and a drummer, El Ten Eleven are groove-oriented post-rockers in the Chicago style; their self-titled debut album sounds like Tortoise stripped down to essentials, or a much less tortured Godspeed You Black Emperor! minus the drones. Bassist Kristian Dunn manages an impressive amount of tonal variety in his playing, and almost never devolves into fusion-style overplaying to try to fill in the relatively minimal sound. (There are occasional hints of guitar and synth on the album, as on the hyperactive-but-melodic “Lorge,” so it’s not all rhythm, all the time.) There’s an appealing breeziness to this album, a sense of playfulness and ease in Tim Fogerty’s drums and loops that keeps things skipping along lightly. Fans of the melodic instrumental post-rock of Japancakes or Trans Am will find a lot to their liking here.
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