Various Artists - Patina Echoes [Timedance]
It’s a first LP for Bristol based Timedance, a label that specialises in percussive, alien techno from some of the UK’s most exciting young producers. Patina Echoes is a compilation, including tracks from some of the imprint’s regulars such as Ploy and Bruce, but for the most part prioritising young, new and up and coming producers given their first outing on the label. The result is a surprisingly coherent selection of tracks that work as well together as a collection of songs from a single album would.
Currently, electronic music seems to be content, for the most part, to treat the album as a more exploratory space with artists often using LP’s to look away from the dancefloor and produce something more ambient and aesthetic. And it’s a move from the label that cleverly signals their confidence in the potential of many of their currently club focused artists to produce brilliant albums. Ultimately, Patina Echoes is an expansive project and their self-professed mission statement is to push forward a younger, world spanning generation and showcase the most forward thinking and exciting aspects of electronic music.
As a whole there isn’t a weak track on the release and as the album starts slowly, rises, becoming deeper and more percussive it is interrupted by my highlight- Bruce’s ‘Let’s Make the Most of Our Time Here’. The track is reminiscent of ‘Trip’, the A2 of his Hessle Audio release ‘Not Stochastic’ both are simple, slower and use limited elements interspersed with alien sounds to produce an expansive affect. It’s another leftfield unexpected track from the Bristol based producer emphasising how eclectic his music is.
Unfortunately, not available on the physical release of the compilation it comes in 12” on a sampler release making up the full 11 track digital album- the breadth of which is definitely worth listening to in full.
Tom Dragebo - How Long [Full Pupp]
Norwegian-born, Berlin-based Tom Dragebo has been producing tracks for the last 10 years, with his last release 'So Good' on Cleanroom Records being critically-acclaimed, his newest EP, released May 18th far from disappoints. Dragebo’s 'How Long’ EP marks a powerful, intoxicating and well-rounded debut on Full Pupp.
The opening track, 'How Long', is a true crowd-pleaser, the sonic stabs that ripple in from the get-go playfully start the track off, reminiscent of the discernible bounce in Todd Terje’s 2012 ‘Inspector Norse’. Simultaneously enters the relentlessly loopy beat, that later goes on to merge with a fruity, xylophonic back-tap giving this track a truly hypnotic danceability. Prins Thomas’ Diskimiks Remix is equally satisfying, emanating a lighter disco feel against a clattering percussion and somewhat heavier base. 'Perler For Svin' lures the listener in with a deep, steady bass from which slowly emerges a tantalisingly energetic tune. This neat, rumbling tempo will no doubt have ravers fist pumping in many-a sweaty basement in months to come. Prins Thomas’ Rett I Fletta mix of this track on side 2 is as heavy as it is dynamic, and satisfyingly rounds the EP off in 6 enjoyable minutes of rapid techno mayhem.
Tom Dragebo has masterfully crafted this EP; the diligent merge of deep tech-house with loopy acid base making it a real tech triumph and a must-have staple for your collection.
DMX Krew - Traditions 07 [Libertine Records]
Ed Upton has managed to get the balance of house husband and record producer down to a tee. Also known as DMX Krew, 101 Force, Asylum Seekers, Bass Potato, Chester Louis III, Computor Rockers and more, Ed was at the forefront of the 90’s electro revival. The alias that we’ll be focussing on is what he is best known as; DMX Krew.
DMX Krew’s debut EP ‘Got You On My Mind’ was released through Dutch label Dance Arena Productions in 1994. Aphex Twin then spied him as a talent and signed him onto Rephlex which issued his debut album Sound Of The Street in 1996. The album's simple, effective songs were entirely focused on moving the crowd on the dancefloor, with straightforward titles like ‘Rock To The Beat’ and ‘Move My Body’. Ed then went on to set his very own Breakin Records which played host to much of his own music.
The DIY producer has mostly worked with hardware to produce his tracks, spanning genres such as; acid, electro, boogie, synth pop, techno, IDM, Italo disco, house and virtually every variation in between. Just to top things off, Ed predicts that he has produced north of 1,780 tracks.
The EP I’d like to focus on is Ed’s most recent release ‘Traditions 07’ released on Libertine Records. As per usual the acidic sounds are plentiful. Playful in parts, eerie in others, the largely electro EP will fill you with warmth. If Ed carries on at the rate he has been writing music, we are sure to see copious more productions from him well into the future.
How Du - Landing [Banofee Pies]
Snappy break-beats are the crux of this garage infused number from Banoffee Pies, the third LP to add to their already very eclectic catalogue of releases. How Du combines ambient white noise and minimal tones with eerie samples to create an atmospheric feel whilst maintaining texture and colour with simple sharp rhythms and throbbing basslines that cut through each track perfectly. Tracks like ‘Healing’ and ‘Testing’ possess a dreamlike quality, perfect for a dozy afternoon whilst ‘2 Worlds’ takes a darker tone with certain elements of trip-hop, a possible stem from Bristol ancestors Massive Attack. How Du’s languid approach is full of balance and sophistication, manifesting in a garage album with a touch of class.
DJ Koze - Pick Up [Pampa Records]
Already being dubbed a ‘tune of the summer’ by the likes of Pete Tong and Annie Mac, the ever-inspiring DJ Koze has entranced once again with the superb ‘Pick Up’. Taken off his third studio album, Knock Knock, which has been released on his very own imprint, Pampa Records. The lazy (10 minute extended) disco number borrows from Gladys Knight & The Pips "Neither One Of Us (Wants To Be The First To Say Goodbye)" (1973) which incidentally was the sample Midland used in ‘Final Credits’. It’s emotional and nostalgic; the vocal undoubtedly has a sorrowful tone but given the Koze treatment, it becomes incredibly uplifting. There is a looping, melancholic beat that barely changes up throughout, but this purely adds to its charm and elicits euphoria. ‘Pick Up’ is a 6am track but you’d also play it to your mum and she’s bound to like its nimble rhythm. Go check out the rest of the album, it slaps!