12 Inch Reviews - July 2012

With Drums Of Death, Jimmy Edgar, Untold...
Drums Of Death - Blue Waves cover

Read on for Clash's review round up of some of the essential 12" releases in July 2012.

This month we've got new efforts from Locked Groove, Untold, Drums Of Death, Bobby Champs, Perc, Exercise One, Matthew Jonson and Leonard Flohen, Jimmy Edgar, Citizen and Teengirl Fantasy.

We've even got audio for most so you can listen for yourself you lucky people.

LOCKED GROOVE ‘Keep it Simple’ (HOTFLUSH)



Second outing for the Belgian producer with an aptly titled EP, showing you can indeed do more damage with less noise. Each track builds up a rhythmical skeleton before hitting with a techy, deep house mood, similar to Jon Convex. The clattered beats and bass stabs of ‘Aller Simple’ is a highlight.

UNTOLD ‘Change in a Dynamic Environment, Part 2’ (HEMLOCK)



Untold follows up part 1 with two tracks just about deep enough to touch the ocean floor. ‘Calson’ is submersive post-Detroit techno splashed with lazered synths, while ‘Breathe’ gives off an industrial vibe under a deceptively clubby beat. Intelligent, crafted stuff from Untold, exploring the darker techno side of his personality.

DRUMS OF DEATH ‘Blue Waves’ (CIVIL MUSIC)



DoD ditches the vocal-led vibe of ‘Generation Hexed’ and focuses on the upfront ravey gear. It’s a strong look. The stand out is ‘Let No Shadow Fall Upon You’, mixing nostalgic rave vocals and piano chords with gritty electro hits. The Kraftwerky ‘Life In The Machine’ also delivers nicely.

BOBBY CHAMPS ‘Drag Queen’ (PICTURES MUSIC)
Nicely off-kilter techno with no pretence and a lot of bite from this rising talent. The title track bassline squelches around madly and beautifully under a quirky tech-disco beat, while other tracks take an experimental tech-house more slant, such as the big acidic grooves of ‘Charlie’. Impossible not to enjoy.

PERC ‘A New Brutality’ (PERC TRAX)



‘A New Brutality’, the first release since Perc’s game-changing LP, requests your unadulterated attention in a non-acidic ‘The Mover’ (PCP) vein. The title track delivers a screaming techno punch to the senses with uneasy ferociousness, and that unease is positively cherished in all four tracks.

EXERCISE ONE MATTHEW JONSON AND LEONARD FLOHEN ‘Lost Forever In A Happy Crowd’ (EXONE14)



This is a ‘jam’ release; the fruits of a back and forth between the artists to achieve a roomy groove buffered by relentless wood-toned rhythms. B-side ‘Blind Trapeze’ actually feels like a live set, building you to a techno-enraptured acidic frenzy.

JIMMY EDGAR ‘Let Yrself Be’ (HOT FLUSH)



This is the first single release from Edgar’s album, and it is easy to see why. Deep crystalline stabs, filtered and phazered; punching percussion reverbed and ricocheted, and a chugging drive that coils and overlaps to make for a dancefloor-friendly track with enough angles to keep headphone listeners hooked too.

CITIZEN ‘Deep End’ (MADTECH)



Chicago legend Kerri Chandler is one veteran keeping it fresh. Between playing seven hour sets across Europe and spinning as a Circoloco resident, somehow he’s found time to adopt Mad House as a sister label to the bass-friendly Mad Tech. The first release? ‘Deep End’ by Citizen: a heavily weighty-but-raw house cut that performs just as its title suggests.

TEENGIRL FANTASY ‘Motif’ (R&S)



Now signed to R&S, Teengirl’s ‘Motif’ is hardly the stuff of peak time rapture, but it’s a densely worked slice of bewildering analogue techno that swirls and undulates unpredictably around frenetic wood and military percussion, until blossoming into a sunken jazz piano melody four minutes in. Displaying enough invention to make Carl Craig red in the face, ‘Motif’ is superb.

Words by by Alex Burden, Adam Saville, Tristan Parker and Lauren Martin.  

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