Jon Sheffield

It's Been So Long Since I've Seen the Ocean

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It's Been So Long Since I've Seen the Ocean is Jon Sheffield's first full-length album. His approach to electronic music feels refreshing as a day at the beach. He eschews cold glitch sounds, obvious techno grooves, and textural soundscapes, even though his music owes much to these influences. At the core of the album is the element of fun. Sheffield enjoys himself and so does the listener: These ten short instrumental pieces take the form of songs. Derivative beats are looped, real instruments are brought in (like the melodica in "Whimsican Dial"), simple shiny melodies enter and exit. That's only the surface, the first impression. Further listening reveals complex arrangements and clever constructions, but there always remains a cool attitude that might create unease among serious experimental electronica fans. "Chocolate Spoon" could be a perfect pop gem if it were standardized and stripped from its ornamenting circumvolutions -- not that one would actually wish such a disastrous outcome! "Dear Yma" is another other highlight: By using discreet voice samples, Sheffield gives the track a completely different mood. Fans of Sack & Bloom will feel pretty much at ease with It's Been So Long Since I've Seen the Ocean, a convincing debut.

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