Boomkat Product Review:
Out of earshot for a minute, Brassfoot is back on his high grade crud with a sick album of throbbing jams landing somewhere between Actress, Kemetrix, H-Fusion, and Tribe of Colin.
A master of mystic, anachronistic machine jams running back to his 2014 debut, Brassfoot holds a cult space in the underground imagination with class 12”s and albums for the likes of Apron and DBA. ‘Sweat’ is his first LP since 2018 and locates him back on Tokyo/London’s enigmatic NCA label, home to his string of blink ’n miss split tapes with J M S Khosah, and now one of his finest volleys of rambunctious steppers. While the style does resonate with strains of rhythmic noise techno of the past decade, and back to the ‘80s, it’s better defined by its crafty, retro-vintage, Afro-futurist urges and a disciplined command of rhythm that places him out on his own but comparable with other notable freaks, from Actress to Muslimgauze and the dub mutants on John T. Gast’s 5 Gate Temple.
Giving no quarter to wallowing or chin-stroking, ‘Sweat’ is all momentum and velocity, synching minds/bodies into a heads-down charge that distills UK steppers, Chicago jak trax, and classic machine-made industrialism to a potent formula. ‘Ceremonial Glass’ works up a dark sticky funk from slompy kicks and greazy drones, establishing aesthetics that ooze through the record, sloshing into a sort of bumpty steppers motion on ‘Tiers Not Tears (Dub Splash)’, and puckered into salty electro-step on ‘Our Business’, with a heavy dose of psyko-jak chromatix in ‘Coveted Codes’, and early Actress-esque vibes in the centrepiece ‘Deep Water Carriers’. The project’s Afro-futurist sci-fi inspiration manifest most explicitly in the title and cinematic feel of ’Soylent Bread & Water’, while the H-Fusion-like ‘Off Dat FFFFF’ takes our £$¥ for the album’s rudest, and ‘Radiac Meter’ feels like Beau Wanzer clashing Kemetrix.
It's honestly refreshing to hear a producer so comfortable operating in this realm. Noise and techno are familiar bedfellows but often awkward dance partners - Brassfoot makes it sounds easy, without losing a glossy drop of sensuality and funk. Psychedelic cyber-horror groove - love to see it.