The unstoppable juggernaut of forward-thinking electronics that surges out of Houndstooth HQ gets another boost in its poppier climes from release debutants 18+, who mix noirish pop, bass and a dash of trip hop with a healthy dose of boy-girl chemistry across two short and sweet tracks. 18+ purports to be a loose-fit multimedia concern, but here the myriad creative ventures get distilled into a pair of distinct cuts that share the over-arching experimental spirit of Houndstooth. "Crow" (so titled because of an insistent bird call running through the track) has a sweet melancholy about its poignant bleep refrain and tender vocals, while "Horn" works its own titular device into clamouring, nightmarish backdrop to strained MCing that comes from the same dystopia that birthed Pre-Millenium Tension.
After a string of mixtapes that announced them to the world, US duo 18+ follow up a 7" single for Houndstooth with their debut album, weaving an enchanting tale of melancholic electronica across 14 rapid fire tracks. The production comes on simple and direct, using certain trap influences in the downtempo beats to ensure the focus is on the vocalists. The interplay between the boy-girl pair works a treat, adding to the moody sensuality of the music. Still they manage to keep a certain androgynous iciness in the mix, like all dark-tinged electronic music needs to cast its enchanting spell.