After a bell ring in the intro to pay a conceptual nod to the iconic conditioning experiment, Roman Gastelum moves straight in with an amalgam of funk grooves, jazzy timbres, and hip-hop beats in his standout single, Pavlov’s Dogs taken from his debut LP, EQlibrium.
With the single and LP title, we probably don’t need to tell you that the LA-based bassist, vocalist, lyricist, and composer is an intellectual cut above the rest. In fact, if there were any more genius touches to this release, Roman Gastelum’s door would be blown off its hinges after an army of sapiophiles came knocking. But it is far from just pretentious art over substance.
The sublime sonic atmosphere conjured around the bruisingly clever bars by the artist who received his Bachelor of Arts in Music Performance from the Musicians Institute in LA ensured that even on the 100th listen, you’ll take something new from Pavlov’s Dogs. As the cherry on the urban alchemist cake, the spacey sci-fi surrealism towards the outro is a lesson in experimental scintillation.
Pavlov’s Dogs is now available to stream on Spotify with the rest of the EQlibrium LP which dropped on September 29.
Review by Amelia Vandergast