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pangaea - Release
Hessle Audio's consistently impressive co-owner follows up the forward torque of 'Hex/Fatalist' and 'Inna Daze/Won't Hurt' with his most substantial drop to date. The eight-track 'Release' finds Kevin McAuley aka Pangaea typically eschewing fads and fickle bass whims with unerring vision - a rare thing in the scene he inhabits - to integrate elements of jungle, garage, dubstep and techno with increasingly insoluble results. It's largely fair to say that the scene has swerved well away from darker, grubbier sounds of late, but there's still a resolutely rude energy at the core of Pangaea's music. From the syncretic R&B/jungle punctuation of '1Game' thru the noirish dread tension of 'Trouble' to the bassline house-styled weapon 'Majestic 12', via the agitated Grime tribalism of 'Time Bomb' to the ragged tech-step swerve of 'Aware', there's an unyielding integrity and stare-down swagger to this record which really can't be sniffed at. Factor in his willingness to get really mucky with the overblown tape distortion and reserved arrangement of 'Release' or the pensile, time-stretched float of closer 'High', and you're looking at one of 2012's most steadfast bassbin killers.