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massonix - Subtracks
I think it's safe to say that Graham Massey's legendary status is now assured - not only was he part of crucial techno pioneers 808 State, he managed to turn his hand to countless production efforts, most notably for Bjork on 'Army of Me' which to these ears still stands as one of her finest moments. A long time coming (after years of occasional live shows), this is the debut Massonix release and has been much anticipated by all those who've witnessed Massey's killer live sessions. Apparently the melodies and rhythms were dragged from recordings of these sporadic live sets and then reworked into fully realised tracks, so we end up with the perfect retrospective of ten years of Massey's most intriguing work. From the cover you've probably already worked out that the theme is somewhat sub-aquatic, and that sentiment translates more than appropriately to the Drexciyan treats on offer here. Rolling step-sequenced percussion and buzzing analogue synthesizers make up the majority of the works and bring back memories of a day when techno was anything but minimal. This is music that simply revels in its sense of melody, with hooks aplenty and emotive bass-lines guaranteed to cause havoc on the dancefloor. Just flip over to 'Sargasso' with its chunky electro rhythms and wobbly synths; the track builds up menacingly before hitting you with gigantic arpeggiated bliss and descending into total abstraction. Elsewhere we have the almost Radiophonic workshop bliss of 'Deep Saline Green', or the staid rhythmic warehouse vibes of 'March of the Triton Titans'. The best is saved until last though, and the album finishes on two absolute stormers - the jubilant emotive electro classic 'El Rey De Rey' and the 10 minute ambient epic 'Pulsars'. If you fancy delving into some truly classic electronic music, from a time when electronic music didn't just mean random laptop experimentation and pointless plug-in over-use then look no further, Graham Massey is back. Highly Recommended.