Boomkat Product Review:
Pitch-black, dystopian doom-step from reliable Brighton bass merchant Etch. Utterly bleak downtempo rollers: half-speed Renegade Hardware x Photek x Burial x Exit.
Inspired by Kathryn Bigelow's under appreciated 1995 cyberpunk-adjacent sci-fi noir "Strange Days", Etch's new full-length is a future-facing set of flickering, neon d&b, but feels ominously in-key with our gloomy reality. Punctuated by echoing movie dialog, creeping synths and murky atmospherics, it's refreshingly spacious stuff; Etch has been engineering concrete wobblers long enough to know how much room to leave for the tracks to lurch correctly.
'The Man With The Other Face' is an early highlight, an overdriven grimstep monster inspired by "Texas Chainsaw Massacre", "Halloween" and "Friday 13th". Slow-building and intense, it's the ode to Hollywood serial killing you never knew you needed. On 'No Sided Shape' and 'Mokujin Ballett', Etch ditches the distortion for a moment for some bleak beat scene-inspired moments, giving an intense, knife-edge focus to LA's most blunted export.
Cinematic but never lacking chest-battering utility or descending into movie soundtrack shovelcore, "Strange Days" wields d&b tropes in the most appropriate manner. The future we were promised is here.