Review: The second release on Peggy Gou's Gudu label comes from a reliable source: long-serving electro/techno fusionist Ed Upton AKA DMX Krew. Upton is in predictably fine form from the off, sprinting his way through the atmospheric late night chords, garage style organ motifs, bustling acid lines and jacking drums of "CJ Vibe". He moves further towards vintage Motor City techno territory on the lusciously melodious but percussively punchy peak-time skip of "DXIOO", before reaching for the boogie synths and proto-house drums on futurist electrofunk number "Don't You Wanna Play". To round things off, Upton brilliantly dips the tempo and layers up spacey melodies over classic analogue bass on "110 Series".
Review: It's a surprise to see DMX Kru land on the Permanent Vacation imprint. After all, the legendary artist has pretty much focused on bold-faced acid antics for most of his illustrious career, but it is true that electro has also been a core component of his output. This style of electro, however, is much gentler and more dreamy that the usual industrial lashings that he churns out, making Nu Romantix a wonderful LP for lovers of both synth-pop and pure rave music. In fact, most of these tunes are hybrid in form and shape, rendering them effective in a multitude of situations, both on and off the rave-hall. The title is more than apt, too, with many of these tracks containing a clear 'nu-romantic' feel at their core, shaped by modern technology - hence the 'X' factor.
Review: Jerome Hill's imprint welcomes DMX Krew back to Super Rhythm Trax with another EP crammed full of future classics. Following up some great releases of late on Hypercolour, Shipwrec and Abstract Forms, the UK electro legend delivers a few jams in his renowned style, plus goes old school techno here and there. "Grand Tour" modelling his style on 'Magic 'Juan Atkins' exploits as Model 500 in the late '80s, while the booming smack techno of "Death Blip" sounds like an old Djax Up Beats record on -8. "The Wiggly Worm" gives us a taste of the acid life, complete with wobbly arpeggios and jacking vocals until it all comes to a fine close with the classic, neon-lit, hi-tech soul/funk of "Old Groove".
Review: A new DMX Krew album is exactly what we needed to hear on this fine Friday morning. Needless to say, we've been big fans of this guy since his days on Rephlex, and he's clearly respected not just by us, but by certain influential figures in the enlarged techno game. DMX has also invariably represented the UK when it comes to all things 4/4 and, moreover, he's pushed the limits of what that formula can do. This new LP for the excellent Hypercolour, Strange Directions, is a wild and diverse piece of work which feels impossible to boil down to one genre of style. Its fourteen tracks span a range of styles, speeds and vibes, but the crucial thing is that DMX Krew maintains a certain air of mysticism throughout - a lingering sense of psychedelia represents each and every one of these endlessly deep slabs of techno-not-techno. Explore and drift...
Review: At times, it really does feel as if DMX Krew must make tune sin his sleep; wherever we look, we find a new EP or album form the man, and all of the highest calibre, too! This time, the long-haired UK techno soldier lands on the ever-excellent Hypercolour with a hefty nine-tracker made up of eerie, slithering techno and cinematic electro. The opener "Spiritual Encounter" is almost enough in term of quality - check those Drexciyan waves - and the res of this beauty develops in similar fashion, from the gorgeous strings od "Bombay Mix", to the grizzly synth-led beats of "Daylight Saving", and the heavy, Detroit style of "Computational Paradigm Shift". Class, through and through.
Review: Having launched Mystic & Quantum last year with Standing Stones, a DMX Krew album that drew its creative juices from the mysterious pillars of stone that have stood across Western Europe, Ed Upton is back with more LP length endeavours for the Spanish label. The enlightening methods of Buddha seem to be the source of inspiration for the ten tracks on There Is No Enduring Self (a simple press release from Mystic & Quantum merely quotes a section from Buddhist text The Sun of Enlightenment Shines) and musically Upton seems to be on spiritually enriching form with the Das Ding style "Expanding Consciousness" a real highlight. Arrives on limited transparent vinyl LP in silk screen-printed sleeve.
Review: Ed DMX must be a playful mood judging by this latest two tracker. It's a cheeky release to say the least and is sure to bring a grin to the faces of even the most serious electro purists. "Hot Punch" sounds like a retro 8-bit rendition of a 1980s US sitcom theme, or like Kool And the Gang as rendered in Ceefax muzak. "My Metro" is a moodier affair: all slo-mo electro-boogie with a smidgeon of Metro Area for good measure.
Review: DMX Krew is back with a twisted, body-morphing collection of tunes on his own Breakin' Records, the label which the man has been curating since the mid-90s. Once again we're treated to a beautiful cocktail of electro deluge and machine-drum psychedelia; "Honeydew" is a classic DMX cut with enough funk to leave you roasted on the floor, while "Dramatic Exit" heads even further down the rave era thanks to its slippery beat layout and nostalgic melodies. "Sppoookey" is an AFX-reminiscent hurter, complete with plenty of acid licks and gritty-as-hell drum programming, whilst "Apple Grid" takes a bouncier approach to things and "Superficial Appearance" blends far-out acid trickles, heavy snares, DMX grit and spits it back out into a luscious deep house belter...something only the man is capable of.
Review: After almost 20 years in the game, Ed DMX's discography is so vast that you'd probably need a small warehouse to store all of his releases. The thing is, even after all these years he continues to deliver authentically funky electro, space funk and electrofunk jams. As usual, "Funky Dancer" ticks all the right boxes, lacing Dwayne Omarr-ish talk box vocals over a bubbling old skool electro groove and some super-cheeky synth melodies. "That Wild & Freaky Robot Funk", meanwhile, adds a dash of P-funk sassisness to the same template to great effect. We know what we're getting, but it's always good.
Review: If you multiplied the slices of toast you've consumed your entire life by a hundred it might come close to the vast array of aliases undertaken by ED DMX in a career that spans over fifteen years and releases on imprints as disparate as Rephlex, Turbo and Soul Jazz. A relationship with Permanent Vacation which began with the German label reissuing Ed DMX's "Come To Me" back in 09 is further cemented with these four tracks of original material from the producer. The title track is here in two forms, both of which have a decidedly Cold Wave feel (an aesthetic that is clearly echoed on the cover art) and sees Ed's own distinct tones punctuated by a heavy synth backing sat atop punchy drums. It's a really strong look and you could easily mistake the Dance Mix for something from the early 80s. Complementing this on the B Side are two instrumental disco boogie jams heavy on the analogue arpeggio hits with "Disco Theme" impressing in particular.