Jimmy Tamborello, a.k.a. Dntel, is probably best known for the kaleidoscopic digital tapestries of laptop beats and indie-pop earnestness he pioneered in the early 2000s with
the Postal Service. When not reissuing this format’s 2001 breakthrough, Dntel’s Life Is Full of Possibilities, Tamborello has quietly continued to release Dntel remixes of a more fragmented nature, for the likes of Swedish popster Lykke Li and San Antonio producer
Ernest Gonzalez. His latest subject, Los Angeles singer-songwriter Ramona Gonzalez’s electro-R&B project Nite Jewel, nicely suits this increasingly abstract trajectory.
From One Second of Love, Nite Jewel’s most polished album yet, the
original “Clive” has the incantatory, sanctified feel of religious music, with little more than an angelic hum and violet-hued bass line beneath Gonzalez’s patiently unspooling vocal.
Dntel seizes that beatless, ethereal track and uses it for hiso own purposes, chopping up Gonzalez’s voice, adding crisply galloping rhythms, and boosting the tempo considerably.
Where once he launched shy confessions into a then-futuristic realm, now Tamborello successfully casts Nite Jewel’s prayerful repose in a strange new light, glimmering of the dance floor but introspective enough for solitary headphone listens.