Air Max ‘97
‘Falling Not Walking’
Before his 2018 album, ‘Nacre’ — a globe-trotting, club-orientated sound design extravaganza — it had been a hot minute since we’d heard from Melbourne’s Air Max ‘97. Thankfully, he’s not kept us waiting too long for the next offering, this time a four-tracker, again out via his own imprint. Opener ‘Turgor’ would be an nightmarish lullaby of tinkling bells and grumbling low-end if it weren’t for the psychotic IDM-meets-free-jazz drum assault also taking place. ‘Paroxysm’, a collab with TSVI, is perhaps the nearest thing to straight-up club-track here, a sci-fi-injected nod to hard drum, though the title track isn’t far off as a sleazy dubstep deconstruction. Meanwhile, ‘Xhrinicibles’, featuring Manchester talent LOFT, brings tension and intricacy in equal measure by way of claustrophobic low-end and spidery percussion. It’s an EP rooted in the dancefloor but more than happy to pull what’s popular limb from limb — an inspired example of the free-wheeling club music tearing up the scene right now.
Since its inception in 2015, Timedance has showcased some of the most innovative artists coming out of Bristol (Bruce, Giant Swan and Laksa to name a few) as well as label owner Batu's own productions — always highly distinctive and definitive to the label’s sound. 'Statin (Dub)'’s razor-sharp broken beats and dubbed-out percussive hits are disarmed by a recurring analogue melody in the foreground, occasionally awash with reverb. The playful pitch changes in 'False Reeds', meanwhile, complement its warm, infrequent bassline and airy notes.
Response & Pliskin
'We're All Disturbed' LP Sampler
Nodding its head vigorously to the classic jungle tekno sound, the Manchester duo's first Western Lore single (2018’s ‘Plastic Face’/’Tangled Web’) still draws regular plays, and their latest is sure to be no different. Veering into fast-four-four territory again, 'Persecution' delivers over 12 minutes of pure rave ecstasy, pummelling breaks taking centre-stage while modulated melodies pulse, and sporadic vocals seep through. 'Ostrich' experiments with devastating acid and challenges your perception of trance. Both will raise your heart rate in an instant.
Call Super exceeds expectations once again with an EP as outrageous as its track names. 'All We Have Is Speed' is a captivating, intricate adventure into the weird and wonderful. Ever-changing melodics span throughout with extreme consideration, darker elements taking over at choice opportunity. Sombre junctures of silence penetrate the breakdown for moments of reverie on the dancefloor. 'All We Have Is Glue' is lighter in nature, encompassing low-slung breaks and dreamy pads, with glimmering aesthetics that shine throughout. A thought-provoking release.
He's come a long way since the anthem 'More Than Me'; Eliphino's latest work on Meda Fury takes a range of styles, from breaks to dusty four-four. ‘Disc Rhythm’ rides the jungle wave with cataclysmic drum edits. 'Remedy' encompass solid grooves, with an undulating 303 bassline and vocal stabs that resonate throughout, building tension with strings. 'NSPG' offers a hungry speed-garage bassline. And 'Realistic Sex' is a slower, deep house affair. Eliphino shape-shifts throughout each track with something for every occasion.
‘Vale (HAAi's Requiem for a Remix)’
Since debuting on her own Coconut Beats imprint, HAAi has proved she's a force to be reckoned with in the studio as well as the booth. Following a similar trajectory as 'Growing Up With Muscle Cars', her remix for Maribou State slowly builds into blissful breakbeat chaos. Intricate, gritty melodics wash over vocals from the original, teasing for two-and-a-half minutes until the drums hit full throttle. Another pensive breakdown later exaggerates time-stretched cut vocals akin to Kenny Larkin on his remix of Inner City's 'Future'. Masterpiece.
‘When The Lights Are Out’
Maceo is undoubtedly one of the finest producers around, seemingly making intricate-yet-danceable tracks at the drop of a hat. This new one is a perfect case in point: deep and melancholic but highly accessible, it’s likely to be ruling in Ibiza all summer. There’s enough of a Balearic airiness to engage the heart and head, but sufficient bottom end and synapse-snapping percussion to make it kick on the floors. The ‘Late Night Mix’ is darker and more proggy, depth-charged bass pulses and tinkling hi-hats powering it home.