Review

Mama Aiuto makes a comeback with “Full Moon Half Hearted” and it’s a subtle renewal of his roots

Less than 3 months after the release of his debut album, Benjamin McCarthy’s Mama Aiuto returns with Full Moon Half Hearted.

It’s a prolific venture, yet he gives it to us in snippets: a bite-sized creation coming in at around 18 minutes, and weirdly enough, the briefness is what makes it a success. Nothing becomes overbearing, such that we’re left wanting more.

Aiuto creates a highly nuanced sound, both current and soothing. Opening with a catchy headway and stunted undertones, textured production marries his overriding electronic energy with a harmonic subtlety that’s truly infectious.

“Dunes” carries on in a similar vein, centralised by euphoric melodies and wavy synths, while “Late Night Dynamite” and “Field” bring back more of the jazzier sounds that dominated McCarthy’s debut.

Instrumental records can tend to over-density, yet through its briefness Full Moon Half Hearted is quite the opposite. We’re constantly left wanting more – each track establishes a melodic and rhythmic framework, but instead of pushing that to be as creative as possible, Aiuto cuts the progression and sequences in a new track. It’s a safe formula, but in doing so the album loses a bit of substance.

That being said, he has managed to reinterpret his style in an incredibly blissful way this time around, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s back at it again within the next few months and I’ll be waiting to hear what’s in store.