'Dark Essence' doesn't so much sound like, say, 'Jaguar' as evoke its feel. It's a track that would fit neatly into any Detroit heavy set with little problem, as it includes the requisite rolling percussion, a lead which acts as both infectious melody and syncopated rhythm, and whirling dervish harmonies that endlessly rotate in the background like strands of DNA. 'Dark Essence' is one of those technically brilliant tunes that comes around once every few months in Detroit, that both justifies the techno project by dint of its quality, and, at the same time, makes you wonder (if they seem to come out every few months) exactly how hard these tracks are to make.
'Defiant' is, ironically, the darker of the two tracks, wrapping itself within clouds of piston-like, distorted synths. It has a militant sound even before the voice of Mad Mike himself lets us know that "You can't come here and constantly take and borrow from us and not expect us to want something back." I can't imagine many samples encapsulating Detroit techno's more confrontational side better. And in this case it also reflects the music's slightly industrial tinge. If you're looking to simply keep the party moving, you could do far worse, but I'm keeping this one for the anthem on the A-side.