Review: Tom Hades is one of Europe's most experienced producers and he brings his considerable talents to bear on this release for Sleaze. The title track is a rolling, tribal affair powered by steely drums and a dense, rolling rhythm. "Irena" sees Hades opt for a different approach, with a sparse groove underpinned by angular, metallic percussion and lead-weight kicks. "Propus" sees the Belgian powerhouse producer head back to a more peak time-focused style, with doubled-up claps and a tight linear rhythm prevailing. Lex Gorrie closes out the release with a drum-heavy remix of the title track.
Review: It must be challenging for a long-running label to come up with fresh ideas, but that is exactly what Planet Rhythm has achieved on its latest compilation. TWCOR's "How It Ends" revisits the glory days of Frankfurt Trax techno with its pounding kicks, Vinicius Honorio maps out a new direction for big room techno on the thundering filters and wild rave stabs of "Time & Space" and Two Sided Agency's "Controlled Cycle" is a synapse-melting acid track. There is also a more considered side to Planet Rhythm, and it's audible here on Tom Hades' "Felis", where the veteran producer pairs emotive synths with a rolling tribal groove.
Review: The last commercial mix that Robert Hood did back in 2008 for Fabric re-ignited his career. Appearing at the tail end of minimalism, its hard-edged sounds provided a welcome relief to the prevailing sound. A decade on, the 66th DJ Kicks finds the Detroit artist once again in firing form. "Focus" signals his intent with its massive siren riff and pounding drums, while "Clocks", which builds and builds to electronic bee swarms, shows that he has lost none of his minimal techno firepower. Sure, there are other fine contributions, like Truncate's sheet metal banger "Terminal 5" and the shadowy riffs of Marcel Fengler's "Thwack" - itself a paean to Dr Motte's "Der Klang Der Familie" - but like the Fabric selection, this instalment of DJ Kicks is all about Robert Hood.
Review: Tom Hades returns to Sleaze to deliver another killer EP. The title track is a gradual but powerful builder, led by rattling percussion and inspired by the tranced out early 90s techno of labels like Music Man. On "Polar", the veteran Belgian producer opts for a tougher approach. The drums are relentless and functional, the percussion driving and metallic and the introduction of a dark rave riff only adds to the sense of drama. Having released on Drumcode, 2018 has already been a momentous year for Hades. Thanks to tracks like the tough, percussive "LTT", which closes out this EP, it looks like it will keep getting better.