for a while there, it seemed that people were so hell bent on dissociating themselves with dubstep that they were producing any old shit with an irregular beat pattern and calling it fresh. cold and cavernous kick drum work outs littered with iron bar synths, jarring samples and boxfresh 808 pings were ten a penny and littered many eps and lps which were lauded on release. to me (admittedly a house and techno chump first and foremost) they felt as abstract and hard to love as the worst of minimal. the pre-eminent local action, though, is a label that has continued to serve up fresh and exciting music that actually seems to have a heart rather than ‘for the sake’ attitude. it makes sense, then, that they have tied in a similarly likeminded producer in bristol’s artifact for this new ep.
the title track deals in the same sort of reductive swing that mosca has honed in recent time, all the while cut up by sci-fi synth beams and fleshed out with face melting dollops of neon wobbliness. it’s rushy and racey, yet never gets so convoluted so as to spit you and never pull you back in. ‘drain’ comes over like a techno producer who grew up on a diet of ukg instead of underground resistance: well defined and again beautifully swung drums pendulum back and forth beneath rubbery acid stabs and scattered hits with the result a tightly coiled and kinetic mesh of broody loveliness.
closer ‘turtle fight’ has a flatter, more slapping bottom end. the damage is done by frenzied, gurgling acid synth lines that gallivant across the face of the track, coalescing at the end of each bar with beautifully hollow hits keeping time. think blawan crossed with martyn and you might be in the right ballpark. despite the chromium finish and neon hues throughout, there’s plenty of adhesive rubberiness to these tunes that holds the darting and disparate parts together and makes them feel as one. and they are all the more moving for it.