Music Reviews



Dee Ellington & Rob Sparx: So In Love

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Jun 30 2015
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Artist: Dee Ellington & Rob Sparx
Title: So In Love
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: Migration
Rated: *****
Long lasting artistic collaboration between renowned dubstep producer Rob Sparx and brilliant singer Dee Ellington (former back voice for Tricky and climber of Uk charts by means of the single "Burnign Noise") turns into musical love on this release on Sparx's imprint Migration by this soulful romance in between soul, drum'n'bass, downbeat, jazz and dubstep. The title-track "So In Love" is an easily chewable soul song that I honestly prefer to the jazzy house version they included in the release, but my listening satisfaction remarkably rises by means of the other tracks that embellish this romance: the honeyed dubstep of "Lose Control", the wise inoculation of nu soul and jazz elements (Dee's lovely vocals could be considered so as well) in the liquid drumfunk fast-rolling (around 170 bpm) movement of the uplifting "Give U My Love" and Dee's voice on "Passing By", the enjoyable d'n'b tune by Migration new signing Soulful Nature could make your day. They are convincing evidences that this couple won't never get estranged...

Developer: Olympian 01

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Jun 30 2015
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Artist: Developer
Title: Olympian 01
Format: 12"
Label: Olympian
Distributor: Triple Vision
Rated: *****
Adrian Sandoval, better know for his nom de guerre Developer, became very popular as a pusher of legendary techno releases (including the ones from glorious labels such as Plus8, Reload, Axis and many other labels from vibrant Detroit and Chicago techno scenes) on West Coast by means of the very first distribution company (Entity Music Distribution) in Los Angeles, a city that he managed to shake by a plenty of dj sets in famous clubs side by side to other big names of djing. He seems to focus on more technical issues of sound processing nowadays and while ke keeps on pushing his label Modularz on, he decided to start a new label up in Netherlands: its name, Olympian, clearifies its intent of spreading powerful techno tunes and the opening release of its catalogue fully meets expectations by means of four hard-hitting steroid tracks (even if "Volume 1.2" sounds like a re-shuffled variation of "Volume 1.1"), where he shattered basslines and inoculates well-forged sounds that sometimes get closer to more grinding industrial techno stuff. Mainly intended for (raving) champions.

Sendo: Absent EP

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Jun 30 2015
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Artist: Sendo
Title: Absent EP
Format: 12"
Label: Sino (@)
Rated: *****
Spanish producer and remixer Marc Ramirez aka Dosem recently launched the moniker Sendo like a shuttle by which he would like to translate his passion for sci-fi into sounds. I'm not really sure of the fact that a listener could match the three tunes of this debut on Honk Kong's imprint Sino, parent label of Technasia Records, to sci-fi themes, except for the title track, whose peacefully mechanical sliding could let you think to the epic rotation of toroidal space stations like the one that Kubrick took from an idea of Werner Von Braun's idea for "2001: Space Odissey" or Neill Blomkamp's Elysium, but all tracks (including the more trance-oriented "Rising" and vaguely tribal "Legacy") could be useful for many techno djs for the opening of a set. Apart from this point and the fact is a quite good deep-techno/techey house item, the working on rhythical patterns is nothing out of the ordinary, to be honest.

Mutamassik: Symbols Follow

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
Ambient / Electronica / Ethereal / Dub / Soundscapes / Abstract
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Jun 28 2015
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Artist: Mutamassik (@)
Title: Symbols Follow
Format: 12"
Label: Discrepant (@)
Rated: *****
After having gained a reputation as a skilled turntablist, Italo-egyptian composer Giulia Loli aka Mutamassik blows out in the tube of thought-provoking and heart-rending listening by an impressive sonic fan, which cannot be disjointed by the turbulent period as well as the hypocrist and duplicity of western governments about the difficult situation in Islamic countries. Her aware and smart smorgasbord of tribal rhythmical patterns, shaking breaks (she handled both of them at her best on wonderful tracks like "Rhythms Rattle on Death Pawns" or the initial Ke Nin Kai"), mental primers which seem to render the thoughts of the character portrayed on the cover artwork by means of catchy Arabian scented textures ("Hearts Blink their Morse Code", "Long Beards"), muffled rackets, vocal cutting, occasional raids typical turntablist techniques (such as the amazing use of scratches on "On(e) Foot (in), On(e) Foot (out)"), dusty vynil hissing (like the one she used on "Camus", which manages to render the agonizing description of "The Plague") and clips that sound like having being torn through memories of ancient and fogotten rites or Arabian nights get more and more synesthetic; Mutamassik's creativity intertwines with evocative spiritual visions that result in sonic streams where a selection of a few sounds comes alive by means of masterfully crafted textures. Masterfully mastered by ubiquitous Rashad Becker, it comes on just 500 vinyl copies that got released by excellent Discrepant.

Justin Berkovi: What Will We Become?

 Posted by Vito Camarretta (@)   Techno / Trance / Goa / Drum'n'Bass / Jungle / Tribal / Trip-Hop
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Jun 28 2015
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Artist: Justin Berkovi (@)
Title: What Will We Become?
Format: 12"
Label: Lucidflow (@)
Rated: *****
Klartraum's label Lucidflow hired a proper veteran of techno scene for the second physical release of current year: after many releases on well-known labels like Music Man, Djax-Up-Beats, Force Inc, Perc Trax and Solid, British techno maverick Justin Berkovi just featured many B-sides of some EP and one album on Triple R's Trapez in 2012, so that this release could be considered a sort of new beginning for London-based founder of Predicaments imprint. According to his own words: "I've always produced deeper music, more often than not even years ago was always pushed to B sides of EPs or remixes but now it's the main thing I want to do, techno with soul. After releasing a lot of more melodic material on labels such as eevonext and an album for Trapez a few years ago I want to return to solely concentrating ont his style for my music and live sets". This release is a good assay of the style that Justin defines "techno with soul": the closest to Lucidflow's style is "Something Together", whose vocal snippets, straight hits and fluffy progdub chords sound like coming from the gummy ventricles of a mechanical beating heart, while some shadows of Detroit style (particularly of those proggy declensions by he above-mentioned Music Man) overspread on the string-driven aquatic disturbances of the initial "Prelude" and the title-track "What Will We Become?", whose demanding/commanding male voice placing the spotlight on the somehow urgent matter of the future over Kevin's little psych-out on delayed percussions and flapping sounds. The fourth track "Dusk and Beyond" claims connection with Balil's sound, but the slapping bass resembles italo-house and its airy sonorities could resemble some stuff by Humate as well as some old entries on Rising High.


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