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madteo - Noi No
Having made a name for himself with 12"s on Joy O and WIll Bankhead's Hinge Finger, Morphine, Workshop and Sex Tags offshoot Wania, Madteo serves up his debut album on non-more-iconic Finnish imprint Sahko. With a deep love of hip-hop, boogie and beatdown running through his veins, the NYC-based Italian has never been a conventional house producer, and sure enough, he's made a thoroughly unconventional album. But Noi No doesn't jump from one style to another so much as suavely weave a path between styles, creating its own eccentric sonic language the process; what's more, it's brilliantly cold and dissolute, as if Madteo has really absorbed the rarified Scandinavian chill of his new label. 'Dead Drop (When I Saw You That Night)' takes the crunchy, crespucular deep house sound of Workshop further into sexually ambiguous abstraction, a laconic, barely intelligible male vocal slithering in and around pinched chords and quietly zinging acid lines. 'Gory Glory', 'Bugged In Gaza' and 'Vitruvian Nightmare' are unheimlich, atmospheric instrumental sketches that wouldn't sound out of place on the better sort of early 80s industrial/post-punk tape compilation, while the glottal manipulations of 'Vox Your Nu Yr Resolution' come over like a more streetwise response to Ann-James Chaton fractured poetry for Raster-Noton. 'Rugrats Don't Techno For An Answer' out-Actresses Actress, with the addition of some perfectly judged R&B vocal pressure; the trippy, light-refracting 4/4 chug of of 'Tanti, Maledetti e Sempre' nods to Newworldaquarium and DJ Sprinkles; and on exemplary closer 'Change We Could But Didn't', the ghost of a smoked-out New York MC is obscured by project-shaking sub-bass quakes and fiendishly edited noir-jazz hi-hat patterns. Immaculately produced, effortlessly shape-shifting, questingly experimental but completely in charge of its groove, this is really a fine record - hats off to Madteo.