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Friday, 24 September 2010

SubVersion Stop 110: Various Artists - Over G (Punch Music)

Clicks, pops, crackles and forward propulsion are trademark rudiments of Techno, a cocktail balancing act that threatens to be too monotone if in the wrong hands, or overtly excitable – and potentially disorganised - in others. Melodic conservatism takes the form of punctuation marks, coating the overall sound with a highly structured, sometimes straightforward glaze that becomes both the genre’s strength and weakness. In the grasp of Punch Music, we have desirable dissolution into the scented, cold mechanical atmospheres as much as warmer, honeyed yet strident dramatics that operate centred to the style’s modus operandi.

“Over G” collects four tracks that when listening one after the other, seem to defy time. It’s as if you’re lifted up off your feet like a flotation device, where the dancing blade is sharpened, bringing you down in the context of 3am at an abandoned warehouse rave. Pinning the release somewhere between Martyn’s maximalist Techno mixes, James Zabiela’s deeper selections and Monolake’s organic, heady and exuberant terminus, the work is paradoxically open-ended, allowing bubbling arpeggio synths to take centre stage on Oosh’s title piece, thick layers of percussion painting over a minimal bass chord on Nir Shoshanti’s “Awake Me”, and the ambient Techno sounds plinking and plonking underneath rigorous 4/4 and pleasing ringtone counter-melody on Muzarco’s “Light And Shade”.

Meanwhile, Omer’s “My Hands” digs harder against darkness, opening with a cactus-sharp parade of faded-in high-hats and seasick, purring-cat-on-a-treadmill bass rumble, siding with intoxication, before dropping into a ritualistic vocal inclusion: “Sometimes...” moves slowly like a hypnotic pendulum, before extending to “My hands are full of emotions”, palming off into a jacking rhythm. Whether you’re not a purist, or are in hierarchal self-righteousness, “Over G” is one of my more memorable insights into the Techno underground.



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