Just before the release of his previous Konx-om-Pax LP (2016’s Caramel) project mastermind Tom Scholefield relocated from his native Glasgow to the bright lights of Berlin. Given that Caramel was already pretty much done by the time Scholefield left Scotland, new album Ways Of Seeing represents the first record he has released that has Berlin in its blood.
Scholefield is hardly the first artist to be drawn to the German capital for its promise of artistic inspiration, and Ways Of Seeing certainly takes on some of the elements of his new hometown’s sound. Though Ways Of Seeing is another Konx-om-Pax full-length helmed by beat-driven electronic compositions and sci-fi synths, a newly-streamlined sonic aesthetic hints at cues taken from minimal and dub techno. The track ‘Säule Acid’ takes its name from the Berghain’s Säule space. When compared to Konx-om-Pax’s previous records - often quite intense affairs - Ways Of Seeing also features a warmer, more welcoming sound palette.
However, Ways Of Seeing still maintains many of the elements that made Konx-om-Pax such an arresting producer in the first place. Glasgow and its musical history clearly still exerts a strong pull for Scholefield. Opener ‘L.A. Melody’ may be a bouncing hip-hop tune that Scholefield began composing in the Californian sun, but the main reason he was out there in the first place was to visit his old raving partner Hudson Mohawke. Glaswegian scene legend Nightwave also crops up with some guest vocals on ‘I’m For Real’.
Konx-om-Pax’s Ways Of Seeing proves that you can take the boy out of Glasgow but you can’t take the Glasgow out of the boy.