Daniel Lopatin’s work as Oneohtrix Point Never has been evolving in recent years to a fine point. R Plus Seven, his ninth Oneohtrix album overall, is ambitiously detailed, each tendril of sound — whatever its source, human voice or digital static — seemingly painted onto the aural canvas with a fine brush. Maybe he was inspired by his December 2012 participation, with visual artist Nate Boyce, in a multimedia evening at New York’s Museum of Modern Art; there’s a fine-art quality to R Plus Seven‘s gradations. But there’s a public-spiritedness that it shares, along with a few compositional qualities, with the ’70s downtown New York minimalism in whose steps it proudly follows.
On the 94-second “He She,” Lopatin cuts and arranges a litany of vocal sounds into a tune that evokes both Todd Edwards (who cut up the vocals on Daft Punk’s “Get Lucky” and “Face to Face”) and Meredith Monk. Sometimes it can get abstruse — “Inside World” stops and starts so much it can grow wearying, despite some lovely embellishments — but more often the trickery opens the music up wide rather than making it hermetic. “Chrome Country,” the closer, is an uplifting organ and choir chamber number. It’s a lift, and so is the album.