Earlier this week, solo electronic ambient producer Tobias released his long awaited compilation, Side B. Side B comes to us as the follow up to 2015’s Side A, which currently boasts 37k+ plays on Soundcloud.
Like Side A, Side B has been released as a single track consisting of multiple individual songs that transition in and out of each other. At a duration of 12:02 Side B is exactly 2 seconds longer than Side A. Tobias addresses his moderately sized but nonetheless enthusiastic following through the samples he’s selected at the start of the track where a computerized voice is heard saying, “Thanks for listening” and “It is happening again, it is happening again.”
Tobias was aware of the anticipation surrounding Side B in the wake of Side A’s success and he did not disappoint. Side B expands on the ethereal analog synths and Dilla-esque grooves that were introduced in Side A with a more diverse sound palate including more audio samples and live guitar tracks. Side B is taller, wider and wears a few more hats than Side A. It exists less as a stream of consciousness experience than Side A. And though it’s more fragmented, the material still manages to develop nicely throughout.
The most flagrant and perhaps most welcome difference between the two collections is the addition of live vocals. MCs Caleb Giles and Medhane both supply verses on Side B’s third track “Til It’s Over” making this collection an audibly more collaborative project. Comments on Tobias’ Soundcloud are already speculating about a possible Side C. To me, Side B came full circle and told a complete musical narrative as a follow up to Side A. A Side C might be redundant. Either way, both Side A and Side B have enough replay value to keep Tobias’ fans occupied until his next release.