“Why’s everyone here so fucking happy?”

Slow down a minute.

That can’t be right.

It took me at least four listens to get round to the sentiment of Tidal Wave, latest cut from UK beatsmith FTSE, because all its weapons-grade sadness (and make no mistake, sadness it is, misery of the highest fucking calibre) is dressed up in the kind of groove and slinking glimmer that was only hinted at on the downcast bedroom sketches of his debut BEGIN. There’s the glowing Rhodes that opens the song, the attention to drum sound, the man himself prefacing his gloomy, beaten tirade with a cheeky little stab at melisma. It’s a tactic he then reappropriates on keys for a banging middle eight, like someone’s trapped a choir of furies in a jam jar. There’s the surprise brass swells, and Saint Saviour‘s star turns in the second verse and chorus (move over, ’cause she’s stealin’ the moment). Tidal Wave smashes right into that maddening middle ground between hunger and restraint, and it’s gonna bust open whatever self-perpetuating pressure cabin you’ve trapped yourself in.

The FTSE I EP, from which Tidal Wave is lifted, is out July 1st on Lucky Number.