Dub techno, more so than most genres, has an identifiable and well-tread sound aesthetic. Noise washes. A D minor saw stab. You're nearly there. While that's a massive oversimplification, it certainly holds some truth. More often than not, the genre's leaders aren't pushing boundaries. They're simply seeing what they can create within them. On As I Look to the Sky from the Surface of the Water we find G.R.I.T doing exactly that.
The entire album has an intensely claustrophobic feel to it, as if G.R.I.T made the tracks then EQ'd out the high frequencies. He only occasionally lets a hat or stab emerge from the abyss, allowing you to briefly come up for air. Such breaths can be found on the opener and album namesake. Slow and moody, it creates a false promise of tenderness before "TTX-E2" wades in and slaps you in the face with its fuzzy, bit-crushed bass (think: Actress' "Lost"). Submerged claps echo out from the depths while the track pummels along. "Sodium Vapour" carries on this driving theme but offers no such respite, going deeper and deeper until it culminates in a fantastic bassline release.
"Safer Retreat" is, in fact, the hardest track on the album, its industrial throb chasing you into a corner while the deep sea chords ensure your continued uneasiness. The album closes on a similar note to the opener. Slow and moody, it's the sort of dub techno we've come to expect from acts such as bvdub and the like. It's the a perfect salutation to this beautiful and heartfelt love letter to dub techno.
Tracklist: G.R.I.T - As I Look to the Sky from the Surface of the Water01. As I Look To The Sky From The Surface Of The Water
03. Sodium Vapour
04. Safer Retreat
05. Clouded Horizon