Boomkat Product Review:
Jimmy Donadio reverts to his StabUdown alias for a surprisingly emotive turn on Diagonal indebted to early ‘90s ambient jungle and chill-out room vibes - his most satisfying album in any guise, highly recommended if yr into Newworldaquarium, DJ Sprinkles Legowelt, Stakker, Richard H Kirk...
After reviving the StabUdown moniker in 2017 with the ‘Classic Slacker Anthems’ mixtape and and a split EP with Kohler, Jimmy Donadio a.k.a. Prostitutes now takes the opportunity to indulge the more eye-fluttering, sweetboy side of ‘90s dance music in his ruggedly cubist fashion.
Marking his follow-up to 2017’s ‘Dance Tracksz’ for Diagonal, ‘Strange Rabbits’ sees him switch tack to the “other” room of the club, a now near-mythical space where DJs (usually in advanced stages of baldness) would pick and mix tracks meant to to provide a more hypnotic, seductive experience than all-out peaktime pressure of the main rooms. Nowadays, if there’s a 2nd room, it’s more likely just another shade of house, maybe slightly slower, but back then those rooms were incubators for alternative vibes, what is commonly known now as ambient music.
While not strictly ambient in the wallpaper sense of the word, in ’Strange Rabbits’ he uses that vibe to soften the edges of his sound, resulting a super endearing sequence of events between the heavy rollin’ house of ‘Teenage Scream Dreamer’ at the front and The Field-esque frayed loops of ‘Koln Alone’ that close the album. In between you’ll find delectable takes on Detroit techno and UK AI in ‘Wizard Upholstery’, shimmering slow techno in the balmy beauty of ‘Totally Coral Reefer’, and utterly charming new age house in ‘Phased ’n Diffused’, while the likes of ‘Warm Woods’ and ‘Pool Jumper’ put some electroid funk in your pipe.
Anyone hoping for a noisy razz-out from ‘Strange Rabbits’ should expect to receive a sweaty, loved-up embrace instead. Class artwork by Guy Featherstone as standard.