Review: Two British purveyors of powerful peak time techno collaborate on this fine collection of DJ friendly tools. Comprised of Dax J: the man behind the notorious Monnom Black and Clergy main man Cleric: who some of you would know from his appearances on Len Faki's Figure.They've joined up for this release in their new home, the techno capital that is Berlin. Sheer dancefloor fury; warehouse style, on offer here as heard on the relentless title track. The power of nightmares prevails on the bleak dystopian industrial of "Flight 19", and the steely and adrenalised grooves continue on "The Triangle" and "Sirius".
Review: UK producer Dax J decamps from his Monnmon Black imprint to Speedy J's label to release his second album. In many ways, the Electric Deluxe founder must feel like things have come full circle; Illusions of Power crackles and tingles with the type of raw form energy that prevailed in techno when Speedy J himself was first rising to prominence. There are exceptions here like "Cartagena Square", a woozy ambient piece. However, it is sandwiched in between "Zulu Nation" and "Harry The Hatchet" which revisit Joey Beltram's dark pre-jungle bass and Jeff Mills artillery-powered percussion. Most impressive though are Dax's acid tracks; "The Quest" is a paean to vintage Plastikman and "Reign Of Terror" offers a towering shrine to the wild 303 abandon of Acid Junkies.
Review: Berlin's Dax J couldn't be more Clergy if he tried. Yes, the native Londoner deals in precisely the sort of brand of techno that the imprint is looking for, and a tune like "Purist", with its wormhole of a bassline and stripped-back percussion, is instantly recognisable as being part of the whole Berlin sound; check "Understate" and you'll see that this same structure is transformed into something nastier and more penetrating. The B-side contains another two slices of neural brain dynamite, the first being the stuttering, paranoid beat attack that is 'Warp", followed by the looser, more beatless sway of "Slip From Sanity".
Review: Danny Tenaglia is a stone cold legend, but his profile has waned significantly over recent years. Given that it's 25 years since the release of his first production, this first contribution to the Balance series - is well timed. Pleasingly, it seems Tengalia still "has it it". Throughout the collection, the veteran NYC DJ maintains a fearsome energy level, mixing things up via a track list that spans chunky tech-house, darkroom tribal, heavily percussive fare (see Michel Cleis' dub of Basement Jaxx's "Mermaid of Salinas") and intelligent techno revivalism (Dax J's brilliant "Dreamscape" and Ho's "Deletion 3"). It is, of course, an impeccable selection, as you'd expect from a man with Tengalia's undoubted pedigree.
Bas Mooy - "Desolaat" (Xhin remix) - (6:01) 129 BPM
Erphun - "Reprecussions" - (7:17) 124 BPM
DOOM - "Alcor" (D Carbone remix) - (7:50) 129 BPM
Review: This latest installment in this compilation series sees Gynoid cast its net far and wide to bring together some of the best new techno artists. At the deep, dubby end of the spectrum sits Mary Velo, whose "Wavelength" is based on a sub-aquatic bassline, fathomic chords and jagged, rasping percussive bursts cutting in and out, and Delko's "Shire" a clubbier take on the chord-heavy dub sound. Bas Mooy's "Desolaat" gets the remix treatment from Xhin, whose lithe rhythms and pitter-patter beats lend the Dutch producer's filters a lighter feeling, while Dax J, Lodbrok and Antonio de Angelis each deliver robotic, repetitive, stripped back techno workouts.