Get a taste for the rugged new release from the Frenchman on Clone’s dedicated darkroom series.
Few producers have received as much attention as UK artist Blawan - but does he deserve the hype? This writer believes so. Blawan, along with Cosmin TRG and Martyn, has been to the fore in bass music’s crafty approximation of techno and on the evidence of his latest release for Clone, it appears that he continues to steal neo-purism’s thunder. Much of Blawan’s appeal for techno audiences is similar to the charm that Martyn and Cosmin’s productions teem with; put simply, in a world of linear conservatism, their shuffling, seemingly under-produced grooves breathe life and colour into the oftentimes monochrome form.
What happens when you bring together Hemlock boss Jack Dunning and one of Europe’s most established electronic music labels? Based on this release, it sounds like one of those rare occasions when the past and the present come together in perfect unison.
It’s no coincidence that Clone have decided to issue Little Things Like That or to pick their Basement Series sub-label, home to all things jacking, for its release. Indeed the title track wears the past audibly and make specific reference to the music that inspires Clone, as doubled up claps usher in insistent bass surges reminiscent of Drexciya and churning chords that sound like Sean Deason or Carl Craig’s 90s techno. Signs that the arrangement is veering into less recognizable territories come as layer upon layer of woozy riffing appear, eventually giving way to a dreamy reverie. However, soon enough, the sub-aquatic bass and jacking rhythm come again to the fore.
“Bachelor’s Delight” is less indebted to classic narratives; toy town riffs and what could be a kid’s xylophone ride a swinging rhythm, and as the track progresses the murderous bass becomes more pronounced. “Delight” reaches a crescendo as Untold’s subs reach queasy levels and a volley of scattergun FX, which centre on an insistent bell chime, dominate the high end. It doesn’t make the title track sound dated; indeed it captures the zeitgeist more effectively than an army of trend watchers.