Elijah Johnston: Carved In Stone


not a hoof will be left behind is a weird listen. The bedroom project by Georgia’s Elijah Johnston reads like an ADHD fever dream, different sounds fading in and out of the sonic environment like changing channels on a distant radio. The songs on the album fluctuate from soft and romantic tracks with glimmers of composition, to harsh vocal samples and alarming beats. “Carved in Stone” is one of the former, featuring the short piano riff from Lana Del Rey’s “Video Games”, crossfaded with slowed down samples of 80’s music. The piano creates a dreamy and immersive backdrop, allowing the listener to float in and out of the sleepy samples and nostalgic feels.

There’s definitely a charismatic air of DIY amateurishness to the album – some of the synths sit awkward and harsh in the mix, not perfectly integrating with the washed out samples and reverberated snippets of sound. Despite its lack of polish, though, Elijah Johnston’s project is brimming with snapshots of genuine imaginativeness and creativity. It’s almost an unintentional vaporwave album – the chopped and screwed samples and nostalgia synths are reminiscent of Chuck Person (Daniel Lopatin)’s Eccojams – but not a hoof left behind seems delightfully unaware of its references. It’s a great debut for a bedroom artist and demonstrates a careful ear for collaging sound: consistently evocative of evocative of memories you don’t have.

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