Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Conclusion - C.H. District
Tympanik Audio Records.
SCQ Rating: 76%
Known as crunch-time for music-journos, November finds Skeleton Crew Quarterly solidifying its annual Best-Of features, tying up loose-ends and generally avoiding the temptation to uncover any new favourites. It’s a preventative measure that rarely backfires when one has kept a keen eye on their particular scene, but that’s precisely where Tympanik Audio Records caught me off-guard. Excelling at their own forward-thinking brand of beat-core – a scene SCQ only peers into occasionally - Tympanik Audio unleashed a selection of hot-from-the-oven releases in mid-November that shook up my year-end deliberations.
C.H. District led the pack with Conclusion, a propulsive outing and the polish beatmaker’s first LP in five years. Behind the weighty synth-saws groaning like elastics stretched to their limits, ‘Con-Trust’ hides a warm glow of keys that blur the ratchety gears crisply interlocked. Let’s not confuse that warm glow with the “humanity” many fringe-listeners insist on sticking ol’ cold-hearted electronica with, because Conclusion won’t thaw old memories while you linger in your favourite armchair; no, C.H. District’s choice weaponry involves atonal cuts through his rhythms as if torn across vinyl-grooves (‘Shrink’) and heartless synth-pop (‘Go Out’) that belongs on the most numbing dancefloors around. Despite such a frigid touch, C.H. District imbues enough warmth to warrant a listener’s double-take; ‘Burnout’ carries some zone-out qualities behind its strong-willed beat and ‘Like a Human’ lets vocals (by Tomtylor) pierce the Apparat-reminiscent melody.
That’s right – Apparat. And it doesn’t quit at German techno; Conclusion welcomes a few other unexpected influences, such as Gui Boratto’s Kompakt-styled trance (‘Creep’) and Thom Yorke’s hook (on ‘Practical Tool’, which sounds so similar to ‘Skip Divided’, I had to check C.H. District’s sample notes). Roping each of these outside influences into his strict-to-technique beat-core, Conclusion provides a galvanic incentive for genre-loiterers like myself to hop confidently over the fence.