Sixteen Oceans
Four Tet

Over twenty years into his career, Kieran Hebden continues to soothe, surprise and subvert genres on his tenth album ‘Sixteen Oceans’. The album contains some of his most upfront tracks yet, and his most minimal. Although he has remixed for Rihanna and Sia, it’s still a surprise to hear Ellie Goulding’s vocals (and, of course chopped up) on ‘Baby’, while the single ‘Teenage Birdsong’ is another highlight as synth, flute and harpsichord sounds converge over intricate, crunching drums. Birds, insects and nature feature across the entire record – ‘Green’ puts you in the middle of a rainforest in its first section before giving way to sci-fi bleeps, and ‘Romantics’ conjures images of seas and sunlight. The final third of the album strips away percussion altogether and leaves ambient chimes, drones and whirs, precisely the meditative vibe needed for 2020.

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