Chromophore—which was scheduled to drop last November, but didn't hit stores until May of this year—is a deep house compilation that has little to do with the style's current form. Beats are tightly programmed and complex, paired with fancy basslines and glistening synths. Every element in each of these tracks deserves your attention. The producers have taken a minimalist approach, but the tunes themselves aren't particularly stripped-down. Case in point: Slow Life's in-house swing jedi S.Moreira, who provides the leanest, most rhythmically crisp tracks here. The Berliner's clearest skill, heard on "Clean Or High," "C2M" and "Elevate," is pairing effective, high-end percussion with melodies that are easy to digest but never obvious.
Chromophore's densest moments come on new tunes from veterans Seafoam and A². "Raz" and "Knotted" pile synths onto thick basslines and shuffling drums, recalling both producers' sought-after work on labels like An Alien, Groovepressure and Guidance. Mick Welch, Saverio Celestri and Luis Malon all take a more subdued route with their contributions. They round out a compilation that deftly explores an ample range of retro-tinged house while remaining grounded in Slow Life's signature lush, rhythmic sound.