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Review: Brandon Spivey: Past.Present.Future

March 27, 2012

BS Vinyl Image

Released last summer on a new imprint called Phase Distortion Records Brandon Spivey Past Present and Future features some of my favorite tracks from last year. It’s a nine track album, cut loud, on clear vinyl. It’s Brandon’s first release since the late nineties previous to that he released several fucked up hard acid classics that melted minds globally. He originally came to my attention when I was trying to track down the details of this classic  from an old Spiral Tribe mix. I was delighted when the very man I approached on Discogs regarding buying the track, linked above, mentioned they were releasing new material by BS themselves that very summer.

Holy coincidence Batman!

I pre-ordered and when it arrived I wasn’t disappointed. Here Brandon is showcasing a diverse selection of tempos centered around warm but tough,meaty analogue sound. These Ninties acid guys know how to work a synth line that communicates with your subconscious in ways that are expressive beyond the ‘up, up, up, mental!, mental!’ stuff, although that’s here as well, this is proper stuff that manages to be mediative while at the same time rewiring your brain.

Beyond the casual listener lovers of proper electro would do well to check this out for the tight drums sounds of Phase Distortion and Audio Deviants and the harder tekno people should really check out Acid Music, Coma Music and Post Industrial. There’s also Rough Cut Acid which is exactly what it says it is and BS production values are literally spelt out with the track No Softsynths, Strictly Hardware although the track wasn’t one of the ones that worked best for me. The album also has more expansive, slower tracks like Trans-Pennine and, the beautiful, Instinctual both of which show BS can do delicate as well as powerful synths. It’s in these slower tracks you can more clearly make out the almost eighties signature to some of the sounds which fits in quiet well with modern tastes that enjoy the likes of Com Truise and the like. That shouldn’t be surprising seeing as were talking about an album made by getting the most out of gear that has that eighties Roland sound which is a corner stone of electronic music. That’s enough out of me check out the samples on the Phase Distortion website and let’s hope we hear more from this label and this artist. (available from the label site and on Toolbox and Juno)
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