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13 May 13
Played by: Resident Advisor
Review: With numerous vinyl, CD and cassette releases over the past 20 years, Orphx are true techno veterans; Boundary Conditions marks their third release for Adam X's Sonic Groove label, and sees them continue to blur the lines between techno, industrial and noise music with stellar results. "Outcast" begins with a tunnelling bass pulse, slowly giving way to savagely distorted synth blasts, gradually building to a frenzy of broken noise. "Vanishing Point" is similarly beautiful in its abrasiveness, coating its simple beat with distorted drum rolls and delicate tones, while "Periphery" takes a gentler approach letting its textures and rhythms unfold and breathe in more cavernous surroundings. Once again the duo prove why they are one of techno's most enduring outfits.
18 Feb 04
13 Jul 09
28 Mar 12
Review: Canadian duo and former Juno Plus interviewees Orphx provide their fourth EP for Adam X's label, and in the process muddy the waters. Preceding releases on the label saw Oddie and Sealey extricate themselves from their industrial approach and focus instead on their own vision - and a bleak one at that - of club techno. On this occasion however, the lines are blurred. "Cut Through" does have the same kind of cold, detached bleeps that made "Black Light" such a malevolently addictive listen, but they unfold over a broken beat and razor sharp percussion. The key difference becomes clear as the track progresses; while the other EPs had a clean, austere sound, the introduction of a murderous, distorted bassline on "Through" makes it messier, more abrasive and like a halfway house between the Sonic Groove releases and their work for Hands. Up next, there is no such ambiguity; "Devourer" is based on twisted, tangled rhythms and fuzzy, feedback-filled sub bass lingering with intent in the background. "Preta Loka" meanwhile offers some relief; again, the rhythm is dense and off beat, but the way that the ghostly chord sequence unfolds over the seething mass of fury means it wouldn't have sounded out of place on Radiotherapy. "Hunger" sounds like Orphx wanted to choose between the club and their natural habitat and decided this time to head back into darkness.
14 Oct 11
Played by: Concrete Djz
Review: Richard Oddie and Christina Sealey have been making music together for the best part of two decades, but despite having 10 albums to their credit, it is only in the last two years that the techno community became aware of Orphx's magic. The reason for this is a series of EPs issued on Adam X's Sonic Groove label that consisted of hypnotically dark, menacingly understated grooves. More club-focused than their previous works, Black Light and Traces in particular were inspired meetings of the duo's abstract textures and an adherence to repetition that flowed with a uniquely addictive viscosity. So does their latest album make the leap into the techno sphere? In many ways, Radiotherapy embodies what every techno album should strive for: rather than delivering a series of dance floor bangers, it sees Orphx focus on stepping rhythms, less direct than the Sonic Groove releases. But more importantly, it's the duo's exploration of texture that really impresses. "Compulsion" is a case in point; based on shuffling 808 drums, the visceral bass and eerie bleeps allow Orphx to provide their own take on old school electro. With so many techno producers trying their hand at abstract sounds, it is ironic that one of the year's best techno albums should come from industrial veterans.
31 May 11
Review: Dark 'tunnel' techno may be a very current sound, but there are few producers who come close to emulating the alluring noise that Orphx make, but then again, there are hardly any other acts with the industrial background that Richard Oddie and Christina Sealey boast. Like the excellent Black Light release, Traces is centred on rumbling basslines and metallic rhythms. "Apparition" is the most dancefloor-friendly track, its cold, mechanical bleeps creating an irresistibly menacing feeling. "Vapour" meanwhile is based on a more disjointed arrangement, but, flitting from straight 4/4s to bassy lunges, is as relentlessly utilitarian as Surgeon's work. Finally, "Density Current" threatens to dissolve in a wave of hissing percussive noise and murderous subs, but Orphx maintain the dancefloor dynamic that is central to their Sonic Groove output. If you want to disappear down techno's wormhole, then this is the soundtrack to guide you.