In place of a full-length follow-up, Gold Panda has rewarded fans of his auspicious 2010 debut Lucky Shiner with a brand new EP. Clocking in at just over fifteen minutes, Trust is sparse not only in length, but also in theme. At just four tracks, the collection manages to work well within dramatic structure; a nice rise, climax, and fall helps an otherwise minor release achieve a satisfying listening experience.
The stage is set with “Trust Intro,” a dreamy, yet rather ominous start that soon feels foreign when the rest of the EP doesn’t follow suit. There’s something undeniably criminal about the feelings evoked from the small, almost inaudible samples of dialogue: “How could he do that to her?” a female voice asks. Immediately a second voice, male, responds flatly, “Maybe she tried to stop him.”
Thankfully, things brighten considerably with title track “Trust,” a five-and-a-half minute ride through tinkering cymbals and beats that sail over a subtle house groove. The vibe on “Trust” is cool, calm, and collected, which sets things up for “Burnt Out Car In A Forest” quite nicely. This is my favorite track on the EP, and the one that Gold Panda himself even referred to as the best he’s ever created. Quick, snappy handclaps serve as the song’s introduction and, despite its (extremely specific) name, it feels slightly chilly, in a jangly, fully danceable way. “Burnt Out Car In A Forest” is the core of Trust, keeping the listener closely to its center.
The light, playful sounds of “Casyam_59#02” dance over a heavy synth beat and end things on a neat, wholly high note. “Casyam_59#02” makes a Gold Panda EP feel like just what the doctor ordered (for now, at least). Although it’s rather short in length, it feels as if extreme care went into the making of Trust. For the indietronica minimalist master– or whatever Gold Panda likes to call himself–things can only look up from here.