The revival of the late 1980s New Beat sound has simmered below the surface of a variety of Underground trends for a while now. Returning at a lower tempo, its releases retain the squalling synths that crown the jolting sound. YouTube channel, label & party promoter Les Yeux Orange (translated as Orange Eyes), has been a notable supplier of tracks that fall under such strain. Proponents of the sound pushed by the French group include Romanian duo Khidja and Moscow-hailing Simple Symmetry, amongst many others. Yan Wagner’s Belgian Trip remix of Bagarre’s electroclash-inspired ‘Le Gouffre’ original is a copybook example of the modern take on the Belgian sound.
The track establishes a cadence from the get-go, with a high-cutoff synth that glazes over the kick. A quintessential reverb-infused snare and clap combo drub with no remorse. The evolving collection of high-pitch synths intermingle to create a symphony that feels Middle-Eastern inspired. However, Wagner restrains himself from ample modulation that would borrow heavily from Acid Arab’s toolkit. The vocals that enter around the three minute mark are irregular in delivery. Providing tremendous inflection, they remind of the Robotiko Rejekto’s 1987 EBM classic ‘Rejekto!‘. Reflective of the track’s spirit, Bagarre translates as brawl, while ‘Le Gouffre’ means the gulf. With a breakdown that scales down to a single element outside of percussions, the structuring of 101’s ‘Rock To The Beat‘ is dexterously applied. The end result is a sirenic admix of chaotic sounds that have been blended to chill the spine.
Last year we crowned Nina Kraviz’s exhilarating Time Warp 2018 set as one of the best featured at the festival. The more recent Eiffel Tower Cercle mix swanked unapologetic raucous Techno with shades of Acid. Elephantine basslines synthesized with a touch of elegance, a sound with which the Russian DJ has been more recently associated with. Her 2017 release ‘You Are Wrong‘ radiates toxic arpeggio lines that mollify the listeners’ ears. Meanwhile ‘Hi Josh‘ rockets you to a distant Nebula with its 16 minute runtime full of Minimal bliss. And none more evident than in ‘IMPRV’, the third track found on the majestically titled Without A Moment’s Notice, An Octopus Appeared And Devoured Everyone In Sight EP. The pioneering TRP001 release of her then newly-found label трип, ‘IMPRV’ is a cannonade coming from a maverick DJ reaching the peak of their game.
During Kraviz’s formative years she released hypnotic Minimal, Tech-House and Deep House cuts. They were fitting for the peak time of a house party as much as the bowels of fabric. Her shift towards harder styles mutates perfectly on this track. Growing up in the harsh climates of Siberia must have given Nina a robust attitude that’s reflected in the track. A husky, rolling bassline that’s supported by clunky hi hats stampedes like a steam train. In the spirit of producer’s hits such as ‘I’m Going To Get You‘, ‘Pain in the Ass‘ and ‘Ghetto Kraviz‘, vocals contribute to the layering of the track. In this instance, the viscid delay repetition of inaudible chanting adds to the tenebrous melody that hovers faintly in the background. Trance-inducing soundscapes that entice you to move. Charlotte De Witte, Chris Liebing and Marcel Dettmann would proudly endorse. The latter half of the track introduces an Acid bassline you’d expect from 1990s 303 Techno cut such as DJ Misjah & DJ Tim’s ‘Purple Road‘. Nina is fond of higher tempos seizing control of her sets’ second halves. It comes as no surprise there that the track clocks in at a 129 BPM. Opening up a quantum hole in the process, this is a brooding track used to consolidate the DJs dominance over an enraptured dancefloor. Continue reading →
Trance can be a curse word in the underground music scene, its innocent melodies often interpreted as tacky. But producers like Michael Mayer & Peter Dundov release trance-influenced music in such a refreshing way it can never truly stay irrelevant. Trance with Acid? Rarely seen outside the terriers of Gabba and tracks above 150bpm. Tin Man however flips the script and ensures your aural senses will be addled to continued perplexion. Released on his 2014 LP Ode, Vertigo (Vocal Mix) is a slow burning euphoric melting pot of Acid, Trance and Techno. It’s an exquisite showcase of a producer who is willing to push the boundaries.
Crunchy techno hats kick in from the start that Robert Hood would’ve been truly proud of. Riding along with the sub-bass is a acidic mutation, giving a weighty drawn-out low end that has a real funk to it. Acid bass has never been so good. Swirling synths that would normally be heard in a Paul Van Dyk trance track make the track sound elegant in this case. It is all played at a slower pace to add biosphere into the journey. This is alongside filtered quivers that add real zing like a majestic bird marking its arrival to the surrounding. Continue reading →