You only need experience the sizzling opening bars to Pezzner’s new release for Get Physical to feel the genuine charge of electricity that informs the very best of music in 2018. There is a brisk intensity to it all that plays out even before the introduction of Aquarius Heaven’s majestic voice seeks to command your attention. The producer creates a sense of unease with punctuating percussion probing as the edges amid grainy, uncompromising electronics while Brian Brewster’s questioning words tease out hidden answers. A Dub follows with reoccurring stabs adding a timely punctuation to the drums and vibes, and there’s also an acapella demonstrating the message in the music. As if you needed reminding.
Every once and a while a bassline arrives that is so dark it runs tingles up and down your spine. Welcome to Luv Thang. The new ep from Alden Tyrell and label boss, Gerd is a relatively uncomplicated affair but one which will have you pushing the volume (up). Not sure if I prefer the Instrumental or the vocal version featuring Jessie Allen’s sassy voice intoning the title. But perhaps that’s simply down to the Instrumental option and the chance to hear that epic, rumbling bassline plus rapid-fire snares all on their own! Meanwhile, Girls Can’t Swim dispenses with any form of melody to deliver what can best be described as twisted Tech. The choice is all yours.
Damien and Clement aka dOP aka, the strangely apt, Aquarius Heaven return to the fold with the exquisitely produced Slow Love for Circus Company. Which not only sees shimmering keys chiming beautifully across punctuating beats, but also has Brian Brewster’s commanding vocals play alongside Miss Kitten’s evocative delivery. And you’ve got to love the opening line, ‘I’ve been in and out of love since 1988’! Undoubtedly first rate this inspired production pushes boundaries while feeling just that bit timeless. Three remaining tracks explore different avenues of Brian’s voice with the tense electro rhythms of Caloni working notably.
Soul Button feat. Stee Downes
In My Stride
Next in line from Underground Audio is this instantly pleasing production from Soul Button. Maybe it’s something to do with the new season but this puts you in mind of warmer climes, stiff drinks and electric dancefloors. Its high on atmosphere with warm pads and relaxed drums combing with Stee Downes enticing vocal on the Original version. Atapy then picks it up with energised bass giving the vocals more edge, leaving Habischmann to give the song a more melancholy backing which particularly suits the tone. Sasch BBC & Caspar finialise matters with the most urgent version that sets moody bass against perky beats to give the unhurried song yet another approach.
Sid Le Rock
Busted with a Bag of Bliss
My Favorite Robot Records
The fourth artist album from Sid Le Rock invites into his world of brooding electronics and breathy voices, or should that read tempts you? It’s one to lose yourself in and one whose textures prove to be richly rewarding, although we are talking introspection – less light, more shade. Much like Depeche Mode’s new album sounds appear out of nowhere to excite and envelop you as the soundtrack constantly evolves over the course of the event. It’s tempting to say that there are no real standouts on Busted with a Bag of Bliss because this journey deserves to be relished in full. However, just for the hell of it the haunting decadence of Foreign Love and the pulsating syncopation of the opening Here We Are win for me.