DJ Overdose & Sematic4
No one does it quite like DJ Overdose. The prolific Dutch artist’s corrosive, raw electro ticks all the boxes, and this new hookup with Hungary’s Sematic4 is another master-class in mixing originality with club appeal. The unpronounceable ‘-o=O^vvroOOMM’ is a slow, moody piece with distorted, delayed bass drones, galloping beats and galactic melodies, while ‘Funky Mess’ has a lush Juno b-line and sparse drums. The best track here, though, is the cinematic ‘Dream Kreator’, steeped in mystic synth lines and propelled by scratching effects and thumping beats.
Teslasonic & Composite Profuse
This EP from Berlin’s mighty Mechatronica has two impressive Italian producers taking a vinyl side apiece, and remixing each other. For this writer, the best stuff comes on Teslasonic’s side, with ‘Golden Sphere’ bringing the electro-funk like some lost early ’80s classic. The slow, low ‘Teleforce’ heads in a bleepy, sci-fi direction, while Composite Profuse’s version has slasher Moog bass and spooky effects. On the flip, the highlight is the sparse, crepuscular ‘Außer Betrieb’.
With a label name like that, Dionysian Mysteries has a lot to live up to — which it does, and then some, on this beast of a release. DJ Disrespect brings bulbous acid and a breakneck, cowbell laden rhythm; DJ660 offers a super minimalist, bass heavy electro jit/juke fusion with amusing vocal samples; Francois Dillinger and Kovyazin D deliver dark, atmospheric pieces; and Buzz Kill pumps elephantine bass into a moody, acidic, breakbeat laced arrangement.
Another monster release on Larry McCormick’s Monotone imprint, ‘Electrology’ brings together a host of classics from the boss himself, previously unreleased on vinyl, plus a remix from the always on-it 214. ‘Madrid Nights’ is a smouldering, emotive cut, combining heavy claps and chattering hats with a memorable Reese-like bassline and swooping melodies. Yet the best is yet to come — ‘Me And My 808’ has slamming beats, irresistible bass and a huge ‘Kernkraft 400’ arpeggio, too big to fit in the room. ‘Love Hate’ has a pretty breakdown before getting back to business, and 214’s re-lick mixes dank bass blips with techno-soul pads to great effect.
Originally from The Netherlands, Samuel van Dijk now lives in the frosty north of Finland, in Tampere. Listening to his crystalline electro and techno, you can practically hear the icicles forming, in all their glassy, intricate majesty. After releases on Frustrated Funk and Tabernacle, his latest long-player ‘Inside’ matches brittle drum machine work with an engrossing sense of atmosphere. ‘PCB’ patrols with funked up bassline blips and frozen pads, and ‘Glow’ is like hearing distant industrial beats clank from a cave across a snowbound tundra. They’re the electro highlights of an impressive release that also moves between ambient and techno.
Null & Void
Londoner T-Flex might be a new name, but his sound is fully developed, dismantling and reassembling electro to his taste. The ‘Mimic’ EP takes delight in its weird, disorienting sound design. On the title track, a deeply swung beat skips, stop and starts, decorated with oddball, funky blips and hats that make it sound like a two-step garage cut built in some experimental laboratory. ‘Punga’ is a little more conventional, but no less arresting, with its sense of space and intricate details, while ‘Incandescent Rush’ adds a dub techno sensibility to its electro beat undercarriage. Very promising.
'The Rambler EP'
Asking for Trouble
A meeting of electro minds, L-R comprises Yes Effect of London Modular Alliance, Monoak and Asking For Trouble boss, Radioactive Man. With these three in the building, you know it’s going to be something out of the ordinary, and ‘The Rambler’ is suitably expansive and compelling. ‘Rings’ has a submerged acid pulse and what sound like live drums; it feels like negotiating a maze of alleyways at night while deadly droids circle above; ‘Doctor Dark’ has a glowering acid b-line, electro beats, and weird analogue blips; ‘Where Them Lights Are’ loops synth melodies and sounds like a live jam; and the intense ‘Dinky’s Tone’ is the relentless club pick here. Buy it, why don't you?