Update…

In case there’s anyone out there reading this…

In March I started writing for www.lessthan3.com, contributing reviews of the latest techno/dnb/house/outsider dub. Turns out only talking about certain styles and genres doesn’t really suit me, so I’m gonna be kickstarting this old thing again and attempting to manage both. I don’t know how much I’ll get done before it’s time to start piecing together those dreadful end of year lists, so I might end up inaugurating intrazome mk.II with my top 50 lps/eps of 2011…

In the meantime why not check out some of my stuff for LT3? Try as best as you can to ignore the quality of the writing and focus on the quality of the tunes :)

As for intrazome, I’ll keep y’all posted. Peace.

P.S.
I hate this old theme. If anyone has any good ideas for a new one holla at me in the comments with a link.

Pangaea – Inna Daze/Won’t Hurt

GENRE: DUBSTEP

It’s been over a year since Kevin McAuley aka Pangaea was last spotted, dropping an EP full of masterful futurism on Hessle to much acclaim in Jan. 2010. Back on Hessle, this latest release sees him burrowing deeper into his world of exquisitely produced spine-chilling bass, samples and arrangements subverted further with each iteration.

‘Inna Daze’ is frosty and calculated, smattered with the same soul vocal snatches as on previous releases only this time only after each has been chopped and warped. ‘Won’t Hurt’ is funkier and more bruising, a carotid bassline rolling beneath molten string laments. Top tier stuff. Full length please?

Pangaea – Inna Daze     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sVGqzqnHops
Pangaea – Won’t Hurt     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sh3pu-txHmE

Prostitune – Justfixit

GENRE: DEEP HOUSE

No-one seems to know a lot about Prostitune. This is what we do know: he may or may not be Swedish, he comes fresh from the Hard Wax camp, and this is his second EP of calm, Detroit-influenced deep house grooves on Just Another Beat.

Justfixit picks up right where 2009’s Money Nugget left off. ‘Justfixit’ is all lush pads and bubbling, acidic synth gurgles, while ‘Nj Turnpike’ is smudgier and sexier, a really lithe late-night animal.

Prostitune – Justfixit     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pYsX882Q0UY

Blawan – Bohla

GENRE: FUNKY/BASS

Dark, harsh and heavy.

R&S Records have been going from strength to strength in the last 12 months or so, with James Blake, Untold and Space Dimension Controller doing big numbers for the Belgian powerhouse. Barnsley’s own Blawan is a producer whose stock is very much on the rise after his gut-rupturing debut on Hessle last May earned him near unanimous critical acclaim, and on this latest evidence R&S have made an extremely worthy edition to their already deep roster.

 
‘Bohla’ is just about the most uncompromising slice of 130bpm you will have heard this year, a crunching groove punctuated by regular 303 squawks and very little else. ‘Kaz’ stirs the pot, with swirling polyrhythms providing the foundation for yet more work from the ever-present 303, while deceptively named closer ‘Lavender’ takes a turn for the infernal with its brown note rumblings and sawing synth razors consuming any faint rays of light that may have penetrated this deep.

Blawan – Bohla     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_xP4e8np68

Blawan – Kaz     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YuxWxp4aYrM&feature=related

Blawan – Lavender     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxYLmQniESM&feature=related

FaltyDL – You Stand Uncertain

GENRE: DUBSTEP/FUNKY

Mature, elegant, funky, and a nailed on contender for best electronic album of 2011.

Anyone who has read any of my blogs before will know that I’ve been waiting for this album to drop for a long, long time. Everything FaltyDL touches has turned to gold recently, and his run of tremendous remixes and EPs over the last 12 months or so has set him apart as one of the very best producers currently working anywhere in the world. Well, here it is folks, the sophomore album, and it does not disappoint.

Drew Lustman’s niche has been carved from intricate, hard-hitting, totally off-kilter rhythms, fusing the best bits of UK funky with hip-hop constructions and IDM sparkles. You Stand Uncertain showcases all the qualities we’ve come to expect from his music, along with some deep, soulful songwriting on the vocal tracks that we perhaps hadn’t seen before. Anneka and Lily McKenzie provide vocals which complement Lustman’s compositions wonderfully, his creaking 2-step rhythms balancing perfectly against their rich tones, especially Anneka’s on the opener ‘Gospel Of Opal’. There isn’t a dull moment, the tempo forever morphing; from the darkly unsteady nightime beats of ‘Waited Patiently’ to the quickstep melodies of ‘Tell Them Stories’.

The production is predictably fantastic, razor sharp hi-hats and sublime snares contrasting with the smoke-filled, late night atmospheres he weaves using them. Indeed, it’s this subtle change in mood that proves the biggest distinction between this and the preceding EPs. Without ever sacrificing his love of innovative rhythms and broken landscapes he has turned the energy dial right down, slathering his music instead with layer upon layer of smudged 70s funk, painting his garage beats with the reds and purples of George Clinton and Sly Stone.

What FaltyDL has achieved here is to take a genre that normally best translates into singles or EPs and craft from it a breathtaking full length release. While the genres of dubstep and future garage have been with us for a number of years now, finding an LP as creative and downright listenable as this is a rare occurrence. There have been only a handful of truly great albums released, despite the huge number of talented producers releasing strings of knockout singles. Add You Stand Uncertain to that list. FaltyDL has proved that he understands which elements of his style work best over twelve tracks, and perhaps more importantly, that he knows how to diversify without compromising on his artistic vision. Mature, elegant, funky, and a nailed on contender for best electronic album of 2011.

FaltyDL feat. Anneka – Gospel Of Opal     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSbrbltv7uM

FaltyDL – Tell Them Stories     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2m5gUDfiKuI

FaltyDL feat. Lily McKenzie – Waited Patiently     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDHvbcI-h4k

Joy O – Wade In/Jels

GENRE: HOUSE/FUNKY

Joy Orbison drops the majority of his moniker on this eagerly anticipated digital release on Hotflush. Continuing in the vein of Ladywell/BB he opts for less unsteady, shuffling beats and more Detroit influenced sand-blasting coarseness. Whatever you do, don’t take this more classic house oriented vibe to signal a drop in either quality or innovation, as rest assured Wade In/Jels has both in spades. ‘Wade In’ is chock full of furious kicks and glorious idiosyncratic flourishes, while ‘Jels’ is a perfect marriage of twinkling keys, an infernal synth line and crunching, seismic sub-bass. Both hit hard enough to fill any dancefloor, and both are further glittering evidence of O(rbison)’s talent for contrasting very different aspects of current trends in dance music. Riveting.

Joy O – Wade In     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ztPgknjB68

Joy O – Jels     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oWsORtbPEos&playnext=1&list=PL5C0F4B9C00FA753B

Young Magic – You With Air/Sparkly

GENRE: SYNTHPOP/ELECTRO

Lovely 7″ on Carpark Records. Young Magic’s debut EP is brilliantly current, it’s Animal Collective crooned vocals and MGMT synth lines fused with the slow, shuffling swagger so prevalent in the UK bass scene at the moment. Both tracks are quite similar, relying on their achingly slow halfstep rhythms to create a dense brooding ambience for the vocals to shimmer over. ‘Sparkly’ is the stronger of the two with its very definite James Blake vibe, albeit with vocals not quite so fragile and heartfelt. Still, hugely promising debut and expect big things later this year.

Young Magic – You With Air     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoCCdsE2020

Young Magic – Sparkly     http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6MXar3hjEQ&feature=related

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