Boomkat Product Review:
Early days bleep techno beauties from FSOL’s one-off alias, Intelligent Communication, back in circulation for their 30th anniversary reissue.
Originally appearing at a nascent apex of Brain Dougans and Gary Cobain’s illustrious oeuvre, ‘Principles of Motion’ witnesses them lathering up inspirations from proper NYC deep house with more bucolic British new age rave whims to dead sexy effect. In the intervening 30 years their charms have only become richer, returning a sublime cross-section of early rave optimism in the tracks’ balance of slinky urge and head-kissing Martian melodies that still work a treat on ‘floors today.
To broach the tricky connotations of their “Intelligent” nomenclature, in context the term was used to distinguish new strains of UK dance music inspired by Detroit’s hi-tech jazz and NYC’s Black secret technology from the ruck of cut-and-run rave trifles that swamped the market back then. Of course, the term became over- and mis-used during the ‘90s, but essentially here it’s pointing to an emotional and technical/studio intelligence that’s a by-word for adoption of Black innovations in techno/electronic music as an offshoot of jazz. Worth remembering that parties in Manchester, where both AGCG and FSOL cut their teeth, were very much unstratified - everyone into the good shit raved under the same roof. Just sayin’ (to all those online popping veins over semantics).
Anyway, the vibes are strong on this one, rolling out from the cosmic breaks and bass of ‘Drive’ to exceptionally slinky marriage of deep house shuffle and whale weeps in ‘Open Loop’, while the gorgeous ’Flight’ nods to thumb piano like African rhythms that bridge gaps between the Burrell Brothers and A Guy Called Gerald, and ‘Critical Ebb’ brilliantly balances jazz-funk-pop influences with new age and garage-house in effortless style.