Category: Reviews: Dub Techno
Model 500: Starlight
“Starlight” was undoubtedly a strong influence on the current generation of dub techno producers, so it should come as no surprise that they would want to put together a tribute album.
Echospace’s last vinyl release was Intrusion. Steve Hitchell kindly gave me a preview of an upcoming CD version. According to Hitchell, this is deeply personal material produced in the early nineties but once thought lost. To me, “Intrusion Dub” feels like a step forward, incorporating reggae elements with short bits of horn amidst the usual techno beat and low bass rumbles.
Bvdub: Dreams of Red Chambers
Bvdub’s latest CD-R sees him straying farther from the dub techno mold where so many other artists seem to be stuck. These tracks are slow and ambient, but they are obviously influenced by the sound of early nineties techno.
Quantec: Unusual Signals
Quantec’s best work to date is a meticulously crafted album of Chain Reaction-style dub techno.
Deepchord: Vantage Isle Sessions
While I wasn’t blown away by the vinyl release of this a year ago, the CD version has grown on me, especially since it makes great driving music. The other day on an afternoon trip to Albuquerque, I cranked up these mixes, and the combination of road noise and puttering chords was perfect.
Aaron Carl: “Crucified”
This 12-inch came out a couple of months ago, but it’s too good to skip covering. The original track, by Aaron Carl, is deep house originally released on Mike Banks’ Soul City label in 1996.
VA: Depth Perceptions Vol. 1
Despite the recent glut of dub techno records, it seems I still can’t get enough of the sound. This compilation is the first release on Detroit-area Pronounce Records. Most of the artists are new to me, but they have all perfected the art of crafting deep tracks with reverberating chords and slow, heavy bass.
Rod Modell: Incense & Blacklight
In my opinion, Rod Modell has come a long way since his ambient days. Incense & Blacklight contains some of his best tracks to date, even as he explores cold, uneasy territory.
At first blush, Murmur’s Undertone seems promising. It begins with simulated surface noise and dub techno chords. But after repeated listens, the tracks are revealed to be dry, computerized minimalism.