Friday, 16 October 2009

PRE-ORDER: TVO – Afanc Remix/Dot and Hashes & The Starry Wisdom [Stuff/Highpoint Lowlife]

The Village Orchestra aka as Ruaridh Law, has been prolific this year dropping not one but two albums, the first being a techno digi-record called ‘The Dark Is Rising’ on Stuff and the second being an ambient piece ‘I Can Hear The Sirens Singing Again’ on Highpoint Lowlife. The Stuff 12” is again on the techno side of things with a re-rub of ‘The Dark Is Rising’ joint ‘Afanc’ and a newer track on the flip. It’s also one of the last 12”s to be released on Stuff before they merge with Dress 2 Sweat and Wireblock to form the mega label Numbers.

The ‘Afanc Remix’ is a hypnotic dubbed out joint that bubbles with subtle 303-like acid grooves and electro inspired drum sounds, filtered pads and dream like synths with orchestral flourishes that eek out a hazy melancholic atmosphere - not unlike his ambient excursions on ‘I Can Hear…’ - set to a techno pulse that feels built to zone out dance floors.

‘Dot and Hashes’ is another ‘zoner’ only with more of an electro feel, that sets skipping robotic grooves against reverberating bleep tones to a head nodding stagger led drum pattern as layers of hypnotic pads evolve and everything breaks into a locked groove, leaving behind the rigid robotic limp and pushing onward with grime-like bass pulses.

His latest turn for the Highpoint Lowlife label, ‘The Starry Wisdom,’ continues in his own very static drenched style, setting electrical currents swirling around constant kick drums whose impact seems to actually ripple on ‘Aklo Cut With Saffron.’ The delayed tom drum textures of ‘Arkham, Mass’ continue the disjointed feel, perplexing the ear with panning low end stabs before everything swells up into this kind of tortured kitchen appliance swamp that’s micro programmed to perfection.

Furthering the almost archaic and grand lineage in song titles, ‘The Esoteric Order of S’ is probably the most forthwith production on offer, as evident when the beat drops, replanning classic electro sounds into a new score in time with the muscular sawing b-line and ‘Non-euclidian’ concentrates its presence harder on the punch of the kick drum as Law splices in repeating claps and off beat plops of melody to the loop progressions.

Law’s distinctive electronic voice definitely sits somewhere between music for the head and tracks the dance floor; ending up not a million miles away from the resulting productions if the idiosyncratic experiments of Mordant Music collided with the hypnotic layered techno of GAS. Both of these releases are heady 12”s for the more adventurous heads out there, pushing an borderline psychedelic strain of no holds barred techno.

Word: James Balf & Oli Marlow
Out: Soon/Now (respectively)

To mark these releases Highpoint Lowlife have done us the sterling turn of giving us one of the digital only bundled tracks from ‘The Starry Wisdom’ to give to you at the cost of a couple of mouse clicks.

DOWNLOAD: TVO – The King in Yellow


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