Label: Not On Label – none Format: Cassette, Mixtape Country: UK Released: 2022 Genre: Electronic Style: Techno, Downtempo
Mysterious mixtape/collage of melodic techno-not-techno and dance music for listening.
I remember a particular tape that a girl at school played during an art lesson when I was about 14. It was a dance mix of sorts but for listening, the kind of tape compilation, probably stolen from an older brother or sister, that got passed round, copied and recopied. Something about that specific tape and that specific moment of the alien and unbearably exciting music unfolding, has always stuck with me. There was no track list, and the only things I can remember being on there for sure are Soho’s Hot Music and the super lush, long, live version of Summer Madness by Kool and the Gang. And that’s only because I had heard them again after the fact and been struck by a thunderbolt of pleasurable recognition. I persuaded her to lend me the tape and copied it that night, then played it and played it: on long walks, at bad suburban house-parties, in my bedroom. Not knowing what any of the music was was frustrating but also electrifying, the mystery became an immersive pleasure all of its own.
Of course I’m much older now, jaded by years of discogs, internet radio ID requests and Shazam-in-the-club tracklist nerdery. But I’m still always searching for the sweaty-palm feeling of hearing mysterious old dance music. Somebody has heard my prayers. This mixtape of deep, melodic, slowed-down techno and techno-adjacent brain dancers really scratches that itch. From heartbeat tempo warm ambient floaters to blocky dubbed-out slow house with witchy gated vocals via double/half speed acidic electronica earworms, the whole thing is stitched together with a kind of wonky homemade charm. Maybe wiser heads than mine can identify lots of this stuff. I can definitely hear some jerky, juddering drum programming that must be Plastikman-era Hawtin, a spoken refrain chopped from early Steve Reich, and some disembodied yearning vocal samples that sound like Sprinkles at her most heart-rending. But maybe that defeats the object, maybe it’s better and more pleasurable not to know. And who is Peace Pipe anyway...? (Mint / New - with download // shops pls shout for wholesale)