Justin Orok and Rory Hanchard have only met in person once. Today, they officially release their first EP as Blanking. Both reformed jazz guys, the Toronto/Ottawa glitchy electronic duo give themselves over to the intersection between analogue and digital music — an approach that permeates everything from the songs to the art to "Splints," the new video we're debuting below.
Orok explains that "Splints" was the second beat Hanchard ever sent him, and what was meant to be a placeholder .wav file ended up making the cut. "The beat is so detailed, it really blew me away. It took a very long time to find something that would fit over it - I had to come up with a bunch of new ways to use my pedalboard, almost as if it was a separate instrument. It’s a bit of a novelty thing, making the guitar sound like a synthesizer, but in some ways I’ll never quite recreate a real synth texture perfectly, so you end up hearing this thing that’s halfway between a guitar and a synth."
The minimalist greyscale video, fittingly, was created by a UK creator the group found in a Facebook group for generative artists. To match the way the music was made, Jevon Mahoney created the video completely on his computer. Blanking let him have free rein.
"A friend of mine told me it reminded him of a Zen Buddhist ensō, which is a circle drawn in one or two brushstrokes, symbolizing the moment when you allow yourself to create," recounts Orok. "I don’t know if that’s what Jevon intended, but I’m into that.”
Blanking's Spirit Materials is out now via Daps Records. Stream it below.