Tyn :: Hidden Sources
8Overall Score

I don’t remember when or how I was first introduced to the artist Tyn, it’s been quite a while ago now, but I remember that after conversing through e-mail for a little while he convinced me to accept an unpublished CD with some demo tracks he had recorded. This sort of thing happens all of the time and each time it gets increasingly hard to say “sure go ahead.” Intentionally or not they leave you feeling a bit used since invariably they think if you like them as a friend you’ll like their CD and give it a good review. The refreshing thing was that TynDIDN’T want a review – he just wanted me to play his songs and send him my own personal feedback one on one.

Still for whatever reason I stalled on it forever, always leaving his CD at the bottom of a pile you could call “shit I haven’t gotten around to yet.” One day for the fuck of it I pulled his demo off the bottom of the pile and threw it into the car stereo on my way to run some errands. Tyn surprised me – his beats weren’t revolutionary or that “next shit” but they were far from the whack. I found myself bopping along to a mixture of hip-hop beats, electronic keyboards and sonic layers that were both ambient and electronic. I wrote him back later that day and said, “Tyn I finally listened to your shit and I gotta say it has potential,” more or less paraphrasing the description above.

I don’t know if Tyn thought that was the end of the story, but I certainly did. I had given a promising (yet somewhat shy and reserved) artist a little positive feedback he honestly deserved. I figured he’d go back to the lab in his home in the Netherlands, where he had first started composing beats on a Commodore Amiga, and refine his sound until he hooked up with some local artists. As it turns out Tyn did continue to polish up his beatmaking skills. While I slept he was getting progressively better at putting down funky sounds and then layering them together until he could sharpen them to the finely honed edge of dopeness when mastering the tracks. To my surprise Tyn never hooked up with any other artists to form a duo, trio or a group – the inventive instrumentalist continued to strike it out on his own until finally reaching the day he could show the “Hidden Sources” of his inspiration to the world.

Once again Tyn came calling of me by e-mail, only this time he really DID want a review, now that he had a professional product he was willing to distribute to the masses at retail. Again I stalled, begging off the review by sayin there was the potential it would be unfair because I knew him personally. In truth I was just plain swamped – I was getting 10-20 albums a week in the mail and another 3-4 were coming out each week in stores that I DIDN’T get in the mail. Tyn moved to the bottom of the pile again. After a long delay I finally uploaded “Hidden Sources” to my iPod, not knowing what exactly it would be like, but with at least the bare minimum expectation it wouldn’t be whack based on his previous demo.

I’m happy to say that “Hidden Sources” is not a disappointment in any way shape or form. For those who like beats with their rhymes Tyn will probably not be your cup of tea, but if you can relax your mind and let your conscience be free these long instrumentals carry you along to a positive frame of mind. The title track is uptempo and bass heavy, filled with surprisingly crispy drumbeats, yet it’s quite a contradictory revelation in that it manages to be methodical and relaxing at the same time. “Earth” is as close to boom bap as Tyn gets, and while he’s good at it the long drawn out tracks like “Moment” are where he really shines. A pleasant piano melody rides along a funky bassline until a DJ scratch comes in, and then suddenly busts out into a tune worthy of being the backdrop to a Final Fantasy video game. Tyn’s song titles suggest he is a man of passion, and the plucked string sounds of “The Flower She Gave Me” confirm it. Now you DJ Premier and Kanye West fans might not smell what the Tyn is cooking, but if you’re open-minded or into ambient trance-like music I suggest giving “Hidden Sources” a chance. At the very least visit Tyn’s MySpace page and sample some of the songs he has available there. Though you may be as skeptical as I was at first it turns out Tyn has a lot to offer and with his talent he won’t remain “Hidden” for very long.