Review: The Heavy Thinker EP finds the legend that is DJ Skull back on SECT to regale our ears and limbs with further precious techno and house gems! "Bazzar" hits the spot with beautifully harmonious synths and a techno funk guitar lick that will keep you dancing forever. "Heavy Thinker" is a delirious peak time dance floor killer, working organic drum programming against techno siren and ominous kalimba hook. "Power" is all about the old school Detroit strings and tones, setting a steady pace to keep the momentum going into the small hours. Finally, "Rise" has those unmistakable Chicago house values emerging once more, as keys and strings lift the spirits to elevate mind and body.
Review: As a staunch representative of Midwest techno since the mid-nineties, Fanon Flowers has always skirted on the periphery of the scene rather than getting placed on the pedestal many of his neighbours do, but this return to UK's Sect Records sees a further widening of his reach, with this particular record embracing his dub techno side with a cavernous chord deployment and plenty of metallic hits. Substance is on deadly form for the remix, trimming said chord down to a fine point and adding some welcome funk into the arrangement to a thoroughly engrossing end.
Review: Having swiftly carved a niche for himself amongst the likes of Perc, Ben Gibson returns to Sect to deliver more of his brooding and engaging techno. There's a great emphasis on sound design and atmospherics in the two tracks on Quien Es?, as ominous clangs and tense tones hang heavy over rugged drum workouts. "Ceased To Gasp" is the more industrial of the two, but still allows for a melodic slant in the cavernous echoes that define the track. "Remain" adopt a swirling, psychedelic approach to sonic decoration that draws you in just as it continues flooring you, like all good techno should. Highly recommended.
Review: Sect's third and final sampler for the It's All For You compilation ends on a bittersweet note, seeing the last release from Sect favourite Grovskopa, who has decided to retire following the closest of near death experiences. The A-Side features Lag's remix of his Sect classic "Atopic", reworking the lurching bass and broken-beat rhythms of the original into a hypnotic number with a fractured synth melody. The B-Side sees "2:69", a brittle yet powerful track with churning bass which recalls Drexciya's classically hard edged approach, combined with hazy orchestral sweeps - a fitting swansong for a great producer.
Review: London based label Sect salute Spain's techno history with their tenth release, represented by highly respected techno producer and DJ Victor Martinez. Psychedelia-tinged tracks are the order of the day here as Victor steps up the pace and sets the standard. "The Infiltrator", Chapters 1 & 2 are both moody and mysterious slices of voodoo magic from Martinez and firmly nod to the dark hours of techno. Flip to the B, and "Lessons On Emptiness" is just as menacing, with weird samples and indecipherable vocals flying throughout. "Motor Zerox" leans to a slightly lighter atmosphere with rumbling percussion sections and a hook melody. Another killer 12" from Sect.
Review: Sect Records' recent compilation It's All For You showcased the exceptionally high standard of the label's roster as well as introducing some talent to the world, and this, the first 12" sampler from the album, selects three of the compilation's finest tracks for vinyl treatment. Victor Martinez takes over the A-Side with "Dav To Dub", combining heavily delayed chords filtered to breaking point, while a massive kick drum propels everything along, and a jazzy piano melody adds some subtle ambience. On the flip, D'Knox's "I'm Sorry (remix)", is a sparse number contrasting soothing chords with micro-loops which contain the spectre of disco, with a rapid rhythmic flutter and chittering melody at its core, while Fanon Flowers closes with "Invisible Life", a murky production filled with chords that ripple like sheet metal over a flurry of 909 rimshots.
Casual Violence - "Acceptance Of The Fact At Hand"
Victor Martinez - "Dav To Dub"
Fanon Flowers - "Invisible Life"
Grovskopa - "Haas"
Casual Violence - "Word & Form" (version II)
Grovskopa - "Atopic" (Lag remix)
Grovskopa - "Stinson"
Sect Outro 1
Review: "It's All For You" is a complement to the Sect vinyl catalogue, and a mark of respect to the CD in techno history. Artists known and new swell the ranks, representing the techno forms in the honorable Sect style. Beyond the usual, exceptionally high standard of quality from the Sect roster of artists so far, new artist productions on the first CD include Ben Gibson's "Clamour", a modern take on a Tokyo-style future cityscape, Jeroen Search's "Section A", a physical, forward thinking deep techno triumph and Voidloss' "In The Void" - techno the way it should be made for the 21st century. On CD 2, AnD's "Granular" offers traditional dub aesthetics and modern techno techniques taken to a wholly satisfying next level, while OCH's "Tears" manifest as a dark techno experience of rhythm-led lines of perfection. CV's "Acceptance Of The Fact At Hand" hones hues of colour in aural form, as a subtle vista is painted with strings of haunted beauty.