The unlikely Workshop-NonPlus+ alliance continues with the debut of Lowtec on Instra:mental's label, following Kassem Mosse's excellent contribution last year. Moving farther and farther away from its already tenuous drum & bass roots, Instra:mental's label keeps finding new iterations of its technological fetish in unexpected places. These two tracks from Lowtec are thin and haggard, lacking a significant sub presence but making up for it with a dizzy momentum. Layering synths on top of synths on top of more synths, "Wonderkidd" is a polyamorous affair of intersecting melodies on top of plinking percussion that can't even begin to prop it all up. The colourful synths stand out like neon signs on a dark street, almost reminiscent of the coldest and most impersonal Italo disco, but even those are replaced by chintzy piano and filtered vocals as the plink plinks on.
A bit more active on its feet—with an actual kick/hat pattern!—"Looser" owes a little to Lowtec's partner-in-crime Mosse, carving a tenaciously linear path through uncomfortably sustained chords and militant horn samples. Focusing around a vocal sample familiar to those of us who were particularly angsty in our teenage years, the hallucinogenic jungle of weird synths and samples that begins to form around the abused vocal is unsettling at the least. While these are by far the most out-there tracks the label has released yet, the mechanistic insistence on forward movement—no matter how dilapidated these decaying structures get—I'll be damned if they don't fit right in.
Buy Lowtec - Wonderkidd at
Tracklist: Lowtec - Wonderkidd A Wonderkidd