The Skin journey began in January of 2016 when an album preview was dropped. And in May, Skin officially dropped. The Australian DJ/producer went on to receive positive feedback from critics and eight ARIA awards. What was unknown then was that the Skin experience was not entirely finished, he still had more to share. In Skin Companion EP 1, Flume packed so much quality sound so tightly into a four song EP in under 15 minutes. As to how, I am not entirely sure. All I know is that I am grateful. Flume, also known as Harley Edward Streten, uses perfectly designed repeating beats that sent me to a state of relaxed bliss. Once just a guy making mixes on his laptop, Flume is now a chart-topping artist, and this EP definitely verifies that his popularity is well-deserved.
Skin Companion EP 1 begins with “TRUST” featuring vocals from Isabella Manfredi. Her soft hums are delicately placed and intertwine with the gorgeous beats brilliantly. The track appears as an abstract letter to someone that ends simply with “Here’s something I should have said a long time ago,” with that possibly being the only thing Streten is sure of throughout all of the lyrics. “Heater” follows two songs after that as a less delicate and more powerful track. Flume features only himself in this song and captures the essence of his pasts albums. These two songs left me confused as to why they didn’t make the cut for Skin because they seem just too good to ever leave behind.
The EP also contains the songs “v” and “Quirk”. Both make use of natural sound in an unusual way, which helps Flume to stand out even more as a creator. In “Quirk”, he breaks away from predictable rhythms and uses melodic whispers that gave me the feeling I had an open space to think. That’s impressive, considering I’m a college student with finals coming up. Wasn’t sure if that could happen, but Flume did it.
I liked this EP so much because these “extras” so to speak never once lacked quality and they really filled in the gaps from his latest album. The title says it all as it really is a companion to Skin. Skin is complete and beautiful without this EP, but this complements it well and brings an even greater vibrancy to the works of Flume.