Available on: Clone Basement Series EP

For his latest release, this time on Dutch legends Clone’s sweaty Basement Series imprint, Blawan has created Peaches, a 4-track EP of gnarly acid techno in his trademark semi-concrète style.

Each track title is a variation on the original title of ‘Peaches’, implying that each cut shares a common theme musically. Upon listening, this becomes apparent; the release is almost a song cycle, with two pairs of tracks that revolve around shared ideas and variations on source material.

‘Peaches’ is the strongest cut on the record, its interest maintained through a bassline layered in multiple registers and spliced effectively to bring out a mixture of analogue growl, re-pitched metallic hits and long, springy snarls that recall Audion’s vicious ‘Vegetables’. This is layered as one complex, multi-faceted object over a simple but brutal beat of Blawan’s familiar organic percussion, tambourines and shakers driving the space between wooden thumps and clunks.

‘Peaches [Coronation]’ is a close cousin of this title track; another twisting bassline/melody over the same beat but exploring a different take on the groove. At the drop an unexpected, rugged metallic percussion arpeggio (possibly derived from the high register bursts in ‘Peaches’) joins in to add wild propulsion to the acid line as it frays and loosens.

‘Peaches [Freestone]’ signals the other half of themes explored, a granular drone filling the background as Blawan lashes a high, re-pitched vocal whine to a swung groove of a more traditional build/drop structure. ‘Peaches [Melting Flesh]’ maintains this rough, strained texture, the hi hat prominently shaping a snappy, deformed house track, the voices pitched down into low guttural moans.

Steadfastly continuing his interest in 4/4 every-beat stomp, Peaches leaves the track identities largely to grooves and timbral exploration, which will possibly irk some of those awaiting a return to ‘time signatures that [don’t] exist yet’ (it’s just syncopation guys, come on). However, with its contrasting mixture of tightly-wound energy and loose funk – comparable to UR and early Audion releases – it definitely demands attention.

Steve Shaw

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