Aptly advertised, “Music for Home” has been the perfect companion to those confined by recurring lockdowns. Mastered by Chihei Hatakeyama and written/produced by Euseng Seto (Flica), Betwixt provides an EP antidote to depression, especially when heard by those who live alone.
Human beings were hardwired for connection. Historically, we’ve manifested that instinct by forming communities. It’s only natural that being pulled apart by this coronavirus would harm us at such a visceral level. Flica seemingly took all of this into account when getting down to work. “Betwixt” features melodies arranged as empathically as a vocally-focused song written by John Prine (“Angel from Montgomery”) or Sam Cooke (“A Change Is Gonna Come”).
Building solidarity among folks separated from the outside world, Flica began Volume 4 of “Music for Home” with the title song, “Betwixt”. The track met listeners in that sad, lonely cellar of their minds. He demonstrates a stroke of selflessness when mirroring the sense of isolation that sunk into city-dwellers when police-enforced curfews restricted personal interaction to a windowpane.
“Limbo” presented the listener with a chance to live vicariously through the passion of young lovers — including those who presumably sneaked out after curfew to find a central meeting place. The energy of this track rose in lockstep with their released, public passion. While unclear exactly how long the duo had been apart, the listener was imbued with the hope that one day soon, they too would reconnect with their special person.
Conscious of the elderly — arguably the people most affected by the pandemic — Flica ended his EP on a semi-serene note. “Veto” followed an older gentleman watching the doom and gloom of pandemic news reports, but buoyed by relief that an ambulance would arrive shortly to keep him safe.
Possibly inspired by the recent bouts of quietude that starkly contrasted pre-pandemic Kuala Lumpur’s bustling streets, DJ Wei’s Malaysian label “mu-nest” has assembled quite the quartet of sweet-sounding musicians. If intrigued by ambient electronica, give Betwixt a stream when waking up tomorrow. It’s a sure-fire way to provide an emotionally healthy reframing to the day.