Jaw-dropping 2nd album by Logos, follow-up to his UK classic ‘Cold Mission’, full of clinical sci-fi sound design and stylized noir narrative riddled with club zingers, checking the electric blue pulse of UK Hardcore Musicks.
Setting a new high-water mark for UK dance-related albums, ‘Imperial Flood’ stakes a claim for Logos as a key dramaturgist of all things darkside, techy and skooled in the hardcore ‘nuum. Where his debut album highlighted links between ‘90s Metalheadz D&B, Wiley’s Devil mixes, and contemporary sci-fi cinema on its deliciously noirish soundstage, with ‘Imperial Flood’ he expands that aesthetic to widescreen HD. Pulling in broader influence from acid and dub techno, experimental computer music, D&B minimalism and the speculative literature of Jeff VanderMeer, Christopher Priest, Lando and JG Ballard, the results vividly speak to the idea of a UK sound as a product of its brutalist, paranoid environment.
Arriving 10 years since his debut 12”, and five after his seminal debut album, ‘Imperial Flood comes after a significant period of creativity for Logos. Over the latter half of this decade he’s been instrumental in new grime movements, co-running London’s acclaimed club night, Boxed, whilst also diversifying his bonds with Mumdance and Shapednoise as part of improvising noise trio, The Sprawl, and most importantly with Different Circles; a label/clubnight catalyst responsible for boundary-pushing dances and a number of cult releases from Airhead, Rabit, Szare and Raime, not to mention his own, standout EPs with Mumdance such as ‘2015’s ‘Proto’.
It’s not difficult to hear how this activity has fed deep forward in ‘Imperial Flood’. From the bullet-time Matrix-style into of ‘Arrival (T2 Mix)’ thru the hair-kissing weightless rave sensation of ‘Weather System Over Plaistow’, he sucks listeners into an utterly convincing soundworld made all the more visceral, “real” thru his exacting production, morphing from the sentinel-bot growls of ‘Marsh Lantern’ to lush viscous/arid acid ambience in ‘Flash Forward (Ambi Mix)’, and Dynamo-style dub on ‘Lighthouse Dub’, before tagging in Mumdance on the Stingray-meets-Autechre styles of ‘Zoned In’, and freezing the dance with commanding force on ‘Stentorian’.
Ultimately there’s no shortage of imitators for this style, but Logos’ combination of dedication to his craft, a classically forward stylistic nous, and unique grasp of narrative places ‘Imperial Flood’ in a rare echelon of UK music really shared only by the likes of Burial and Raime.