tom ellis has proven himself to be a distinctive and distinguished producer of deep club music throughout his career. his remit is wide within that niche, traversing between tech and house, all the while lacing anything from a jazzy motif to a druggy hook to a catchy spoken word vocal into his always torque-y grooves. this ep for barcelona based imprint indigo raw – recently under new, assisted stewardship from london’s paul loraine – though, might be his best yet: each of the three needs its six minute plus duration for the unhurried narratives to unfold. just as stretched out are the grooves (save on ‘backwoods’), which roll without even the slightest hint of friction to their heady and hypnotic conclusions.
‘go through me’ is smooth like recent two armadillos output, where subtle effects on a rattling hat, a very slight static prickle and a delicately placed “be good to me” vocal (culled from this i reckon) are the only accompaniments to the groove. it’s what the rather lazy descriptor ‘headsdown’ was made for. the drums on ‘minds on music’ skip a little more, their glistening edges cutting up through liquid pads and a reservedly cheery bassline. swathes of echo add more body, as does an occasional, underwater sounding guitar phrase, and essentially that’s it. but it’s exactly enough to have your body doing something repetitive and to keep your mind in a state of wonder. as mentioned, ‘backwoods’ is less solidified, instead dial-up internet squeals, cartoony (good thing) mike monday sound designs and weird machine splutters are scattered around the airwaves until kinda tied together by a thick, warm pad and dumpy kick drum. it’s odd, but a great patchwork of sounds and styles (including the soulful vocal from this moomin cut) that ultimately have you engaged until right at the last.