The Wikipedia page for "ghettotech" claims the genre is making a resurgence. While it's inadvisable to take everything on the website at face value, this claim makes sense given our so-called age of austerity, and the continuing popularity of the similarly raw, stripped down Ostgut Ton sound. This EP, like Berghain techno, owes more to the dark, industrial side of original Detroit electronic music than much of what's evolved from it over the last twenty years. It's cold, harsh and bleak. Electro, of course, is what Juan Atkins was doing before he helped invent techno. And he also set the scene for rough, fast breakbeat with its syncopated kicks and rushing hi-hats that, along with amusingly smutty lyrics, characterised ghettotech. Cascadian Nights develops this (minus the lyrics) into a ping-pong microsoup of glitches, zips and zaps.
It's a brilliant combination. Firstly, there's the danceability, urging you to don your black shellsuit and jit like a motherfucker. Secondly, there are the details. A closer look at the radioactive chaos of "The Curves Neck," for example, reveals painstaking attention to detail—continual variation is created through pitchshifting, reversing and other effects, even on the background lines. The four tracks that appear on the 12-inch are conscious of the vinyl format and are furious, encouraging battle tricks—for the very brave—whereas the four extras on the digital version are more personable, for home listening perhaps, or for less accessible but more interesting sets. Extreme syncopation is still around, but tonality is added, like the warm, sentimental pads washing over the journeying "Lost in Place," and dragged beats and watery background plinks characterize "Steel Linens Second Version." This is music that does everything all at once, and succeeds.
Buy Chris 214 - Cascadian Nights EP at
Tracklist: Chris 214 - Cascadian Nights EP A1 Burbujas
A2 Live Animals
B1 The Curves Neck
Digital: Lost in Place
Digital: Steel Linens
Digital: Pogo Bounce
Digital: The Manglers