Jungle, gabber and reggaeton combine on this heavyweight album.
While the sounds on Flowers Of The Revolution are hardly non-Western, the album is a fierce clash between musical traditions like reggaeton, jungle, dembow and gabber. Despite its brute force, the LP is surprisingly measured, playing out more like an instrumental radio play with intermissions, rises and falls and a thunderous climax. It's a record that uses the open-endedness of experimental club music to fashion a narrative without sacrificing its confrontational, sometimes violent nature.
The album starts on a collaboration with Osheyack, another Shanghai-based producer who takes fragments of other club music to make the hardest, sharpest tracks he can—it's the SVBKVLT way. "The Horns" is a good preview for what's to come, with shouted vocals, violent percussion and breaks into gorgeous, triumphant brass. You get Homemade Weapons-style breakbeat precision on "Changement De Régime" and old-school AFX clobbering kicks on "Sangre Y Poder," tracks that are based on Latin rhythms yet mutated into something mongrel.
Flowers Of The Revolution culminates with "Montreal Terror Corps," which is easily one of the most memorable, mind-bending tunes released on SVBKVLT so far. Named after the infamous gabber group Rotterdam Terror Corps, it's harsh and discordant, but also funky—the effect is almost like weightless grime aesthetics applied to gabber, which makes the distorted kicks feel even crunchier.
As with most SVBKVLT releases, the album is appended with a few remixes that offer a different way into Nahash's sound. Gabber Modus Operandi put their hardcore spin on "A Secret Christian Influence" with raucous splatters of overdriven kick drums followed by nimble cliffhanger breakdowns. DJ Plead's rework of "A Better Future" emphasizes how he's fast becoming one of dance music's most dazzling drum programmers. Though the concept behind Flowers Of The Revolution feels more than an arm's length away when you actually listen, the tension—between cultures, between regional sounds, between good and evil—makes for a gripping record.
Wed / 8 Jul 2020
01. The Horns feat. Osheyack
02. A Secret Christian Influence
03. Changement De Reaime
04. A Better Future
05. Sangre Y Poder
06. Pluie Eternelle
07. Montreal Terror Corps
08. The Horns feat. Osheyack (Elvin Brandhi Remix)
09. A Secret Christian Influence (Gabber Modus Operandi Remix)
10. A Better Future (DJ Plead Remix)