Review: The latest split release on Ben Sims' label features some new names alongside a well-known Theory associate. Mark Williams has been putting out club techno for over 15 years, and on "Journey Man", he displays his ability for crafting well-constructed tracks. Based on a lithe, rolling rhythm, the UK producer weaves in eerie synths and looped chord sequences. It's radically different from Japanese producer Hiroaki Iizuka's contribution. "Superstition" resounds to a walking funk bass, chopped up vocals scattered amid dubby filters and cavernous drums. Meanwhile, his fellow countryman Kazu Kimura opts for a more intense approach with the tweaked bass intensity of "Flash".
Review: Mark Williams was one of the unsung heroes of late 90s techno - can he finally gain the recognition he deserves? Certainly on the evidence of Zero, Williams hasn't lost his knack of crafting powerful yet musical tribal techno. "Full Circle Chapter 3" is an upfront affair, powered by storming beats and firing percussion, yet it breaks down to the sound of warm, filtered melodies. "Remembrance Of Things Past" follows a similar path: while the same pounding beats prevail, the percussive licks are lighter and give way to dreamy melodies and an atmospheric vocal sample. In an age of chiseled-jaw seriousness, Williams is more relevant than ever.
Review: Fans of Mark Williams may prefer the original versions on this release, but there is no doubt that this remix package scores highly on diversity. The remixes of "Change of Heart" range from the heavy, rolling tribal techno and whooshing effects of DJ Cristao & Toni Alvarez's take to the pulsing bass and chord stabs of Giacomo Stallone's version and Jesus Soblechero's tracky, stripped back interpretation. "The Low Talker" is also available in a variety of reshapes: from Josh Love's disco'n'strings sampling tribal pounder to Miche & Mirzinho's Ben Sims-inspired Hardgroove take and the grandiose swagger of Ortin Cam's epic take - indeed there is no doubt that there is something for everyone in the techno audience.