TBR: 1st June
Highlighting the luminous talent roster associated with Zone Records, the French electronic music label releases 16 tracks of pure class. Touching base with the old guard and putting the new-comers on a platform they deserve and have earned, this album offers a spectrum of sound that introduces us to over a dozen hot names in the underground scene.
It begins on an intro track by Kittin. It welcomes us to the anniversary release of Zone's latest records. It rings like Enigma who also had a similar introduction. Next a chunky bass riff enters with a kick and snare driving the rhythm. Synthesiser bass spans out, increasing its scope of reach with the waveforms. Progressive sound growth brings out layers and aspects that mix like fitting jigsaw blocks. Vocal whispers top the cake as they repeat and chant with close-up vibes. Alessandro Adriani offers up the WSB Vocal mix of Control Machine.
The Hacker is next with Nano Technology. Sounds like a cryptocurrency I collect. It begins on spooky synthesisers and cracking digital drums that spark with attack. Electronic crunch sounds begin to scale the cliffs of rhythm as the beats continue to hammer down. Banging sub-bass meets garbled upper notes that dance in circles around a tight drumbeat. This is followed by a scratchy rubber style synthesiser melody that reverberates and scouts around a sunken rhythm. Slow moving tempo doubles up with hats and snare mixing with synthesise that pulses in a continual progression. Maelstrom with Est grows gracefully across digital beats and exploratory sounds that build from the solid rhythmic foundation.
A banging rhythm comes after, it booms with heavy kick and electronic bass. Drums smash down a heavy dance rhythm as hats and shakers bring out a crumbled top layer. We are the cream and we pour over the pudding with moves of our own design. A constant one-two pulse pushes the symphonic mixtures of synthesiser into hypnotic phrases. Slow Heal by Cardopusher has a kinetic power that wants to keep going. A strange track by The Populists follows. UltraViolet begins on a digital distortion and an oddly skewed melody. Zaps and beeps fill out the rhythm and slapping snares and continual kicks rage through the digital jungle. Chimes and melodic motifs work together underneath the driving percussion. As it progresses, the bass elevates and the drums gather pace and energy until it's brought to the boil
In Aeternam Vale brings us Milky Way. A funky melodious bass rhythm unfurls that brings out a sensation of 80s disco. Tappety hats roll and bounce in a constant flow of percussion as the steady bass brings on the dance. Synth harmony builds gradually from within, reaching out to the sides and lifting itself up onto the ledge of bass. It jostles for space within the notes and deciphers its own perception of the energy within the track. Next, a series of blips echo into the void as a whining synth scans the horizon. Kick then begins, a fast pace is injected and provides a backbone for a scattered progression of notes. Robotic and digital sounds jangle on strings tied to a marching machine. Flash Burst by Commuter takes us into computerised forums of flow.
Digging synth bass and scatterings of zap open and a vocal-line begins to chant. A mix of mashed-up beats and notes roll over each other as the voice pushes down a tempo on the drums. Electronic sounds fizz and hum as the distortion and voltage combine in sonic discoveries. Gesaffelstein offers Icia. It is abstract and intense with a solid rhythm all the way through. At the half-way mark it breaks down into synth chords that resonate like church organs. The voice-over begins to take on a haunting atmosphere. Followed by a high-end dancing pulse beat, electro hats and toms pop alongside crack snare and room-sized reverb. Then, a choppy synthesiser melody begins to repeat to the drum. Bass in the keys brings the music into the middle and floats on low density bubbles. Screeching slippery sounds occasionally reach up as rhythms grow and merge with flowing breaks and interludes. Jensen Interceptor & Kris Baha bring Out There On The Ice .
Djedjotronic is next with Zonorama. A deep and aerated bass full of power surges like electricity in slow wavering rhythm. As soon as we've adjusted, a series of drums and synthesisers fall into place. Heavy kick and repeating melodies allow an industrial sound that rumbles and creaks under mechanical energy. Staggered keyboards shoot machine-gun like barrages of notes into the flow and the casual dynamic simply absorbs them and carries them away. Underground warbles of synthesiser swell up from the silence left behind. A vocal cries out, drums begin and their body of sound builds into the full kit. After the introduction, a forward-facing upbeat dance energy ensues as the bars carry through. The vocal repeats and changes, it's a live addition and not a sample. Extra layers of synthesiser begin to swell and boil in neat patterns around the non-stop beat. Zone by Kittin repeats the word over and over.
We get to hear the space-launch again as the new number starts. We have lift off! A bass and drum section begins and the famous words continue. The excitement and radio static combined bring out a sense of the 20th century. Synthesisers bash out rhythmic pounds on the percussion as deep and digging bass-drums and toms flow in a regular wave. Snare lifts the track into a retro melodic section where synthesisers combine in all-kinds of tune and rhythmic layer. David Carretta hits home with Nuit Panic. The next one starts on floppy bass that slobbers over the kick. A gradual increase in amplitude brings on a vocal, We Live We Die is the title and it's by DJ Hell. Dirty and slime ridden bass continues to groove in dingy lines while quick and snappy drums clasp for handholds on the wall. Odd skewered inflections crisp the edges of the main melody as the heart-beat like rhythm pushes onward.
Neowave is next. This track by Millimetric begins on a rummaging rhythm that breaks and folds into a forest of electronic zaps. A pulsing rhythm pushes the sides as space is made for the addition of new drum layers. A heady set of percussive instruments fill the void, a smash and pound style power-kit seeps into digital realms. The final number is calm to begin with. Silky synthesiser streaks across the virtual space as electronic potential fizzes and broods on the cathode. As it builds, a cyberstep rhythm begins to chatter in alien phonics that rhythmically match the drums. The joining of sounds on each beat pulse creates a staggering and towered form that glows with synthesised radiance. Hyperstellar by Monarchy ends the album with a slow and deep drive through subatomic sounds.
You can find out more by visiting Zone Records online
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