Wednesday, 27 January 2010

PRE-ORDER: Binary Sequence - Below The Ice EP [Dark Arx]

There’s scant information available about Binary Sequence online, which makes a pleasant change given that the typical pattern for the emergence of new music can involve a disproportionate amount of hype. Anyway, there’s something about his debut release for the Dark Arx label that justifies the anonymity – the '66/31' EP is appropriately stark and alien, trading obvious human emotion for a cool mechanical sheen.

On the title track his closest contemporaries are probably mid-period Autechre, somewhere between the sci-fi dystopia of 'Tri Repetae' and 'Confield'’s stammered half-rhythms. Yet that duo’s terse atmosphere is successfully refracted through the last few years’ worth of post-garage music. The result rattles with static interference and the digital equivalent of vinyl crackle, offset by chill stabs of sub-bass entirely removed from either the soft dub edge of Digital Mystikz or the heady heat of Burial. After such a reserved opener, ‘Below The Ice’ is unexpectedly gorgeous, restoring an analogue warmth that leaves a long burst of noise trailing behind each percussive hit. It’s the guitar work that really resonates though; like the more contemplative moments of Fennesz’s 'Black Sea' album it emerges from heavily effected fuzz as a delicate contrast to the background wash of computer chaos.

Closer ‘Arc’ is the most in thrall to London-borne dance sounds, driven by a stuttering beat that might once have been garage, but somewhere along the line was stripped of any organic quality. Like the rest of the EP this soul isn’t locked within rhythm but lost in the background drone of subtle ambience and slow-moving melody, suggesting there’s more wintry beauty to come from this intriguing producer.

Words: Rory Gibb
Out: Now

For audio of the EP download the second installment in the recently upped Dark Arx podcast, mixed by Binary Sequence...

DOWNLOAD: Binary Sequence - Dark Arx Podcast no.2


Onoff - Distant Personal
Binary Sequence - 66//31
Flying Lotus - Dance Floor Stalker
Autechre - Garbagemx36
Lukid - Chord
Telefon Tel Aviv - When It Happens It Moves All By Itself
Aphex Twin - On
Pole - Heim (Fourtet Remix)
Burial - U.K.
Brackles & Shortstuff - Broken Harp
Binary Sequence - Arc
Scuba - Tense
Photek - UFO (J Majik Remix)
Binary Sequence - Below The Ice


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