Saturday, May 30, 2020
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Antiquark: Adama

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Artist: Antiquark
Title: Adama
Format: Download Only (MP3 + Lossless)
Label: self-released
Released six months ago but only sent to me as a promo last week, Adama is a release I missed earlier this year, but I’m glad it swung round again and I got a second chance to hear it.

An EP consisting of two original tracks and four remixes, it’s a thick-stirred melting pot of a wide variety of genres. The instrumentation has that ethno-electronica sound of acts like Asian Dub Foundation, but the song structures are more electro-pop, yet the male vocal feels like it’s been lifted from something more rocky and gothic.

After the solid and fairly radio-friendly title track that serves as a good indicator, “Adelita” is a stranger affair, with a darker groove and a strange form of beat-poetry structure including a whole bunch of esoteric choral and spoken-word samples.

In the remix bundle, Getriebe Analogique bring a nicely understated funk to “Medavog” with a lovely bit of bass guitar work and the result is a strong slice of synthpop. Rudy Seery’s take on “La Fine” results ups the Eastern flavours with drone tones that are somewhere between throat singing and didgeridoo over a laidback trip-hoppy rhythm that evolves into something more complex as it progresses.

The final two remixes have a broader scope and feel less coherent within the package. In a jolt of styles, Prosthesis Unit’s version of “Medavog” is a thumping but slightly over-familiar bit of gothic techno-pop with a hint of electro breaks. Milkmud’s long ‘Factory Steel’ mix of “Laika” is an edgier offering, with a heavy rhythmic industrial thump underpinning distorted samples, randomised bleeps and oscillated squeals that works in its own right but lands us a whole world away from where we began.

It’s a bright, poppy collection of tunes that will strongly appeal to fans of Afro Celt Sound System, Dr. Didg and so on, and I make no apology for the deliberate use of 1990’s references in these comparisons as there’s something quite rooted in that era production-wise about this release as well.