We’ve been presented with so much delectable musical produce for degustation these past few hours that, at times, it’s been tricky to fully digest the whole smorgasbord. But, arguably saving the sweetest for last – as culinary custom would so often have us consume things – we’re strangely honoured to be able to put forward a few highlights from Mesita, aka Colorado wunderkind James Cooley’s latest long-playing effort, Future Proof. “I did a sudden release of it this morning” read an adorably enthusiastic correspondence. “(No label so why not?)” And we’re unspeakably thankful Cooley deigned to do so, for the highlights come thick and fast as a Colorado dessert.
Up first both in terms of tracklisting and perhaps subjective preference is No Future – a springy funk slink seemingly indebted to anyone and everyone from Metronomy to TVOTR; Nile Rodgers to Ludovico Einaudi as both industrial glitch and ethereal pianistic tinkering likewise meet with Cooley’s irreproachable vocal delivery and a spattering of shimmering guitar. And for such nihilistic subject matter (“Future, no future/ There is no future, future left for me” provides its lyrical fulcrum) there’s plenty of rhyme, reason and with that animation to it.
Elsewhere, the exceptional staccato acoustica of Damage recalls Grizzly Bear attempting to jumpstart DIANA’s Perpetual Surrender, as Cooley intertwines a beguiling innocence with the sort of self-assurance that surely takes years to cultivate.
All of which, alongside a raft of similarly exemplary material both new and slightly older alike, brings us to the ten-track full-length’s breathtaking denouement, Nothing. A dextrous interweaving of the minor key melancholy expected of Reckoner, the rustic humilities of Efterklang and the muffled despondency of Röyksopp’s Melody A.M., it’s the kind of heartwarming composition that, had Dan Snaith unanticipatedly published it this morning, we’d not tire of singing its praises any time prior to next summer. But such is the absolute ingenuity at its core that comparisons feel deplorably futile, for Future Proof somehow sounds like much, and nothing at once, and suggests it’s only a matter of time before Cooley has a whole load more to hold onto than the nothingness he’s purportedly clinging to currently…