The duo behind Forward Strategy Group returns with their first release in almost a year. Following the success of the “Labour Division” album and “The New Formal” EP (both on Perc Trax), Al Matthews (Bleaching Agent, half of Blacknecks) and Patrick Walker have worked with Max_M and his M_Rec Ltd. to bring three complex and hypnotic cuts to vinyl fans and djs around the world.
“A Marvel” sounds like an ode to the label’s vision. It’s a trippy and layered loop made of molded, elastic sounds that subtly mutate, aided by a warm, but stripped down and forward driving groove. Its crescendo is paced and systematic, a celebration of experimental techno.
On the flip side, the due brings in a small dose of their industrial heritage. Initially, “Levity” is a more brutal affair, with it’s groove formed by an unforgiving bass drum and a rolling mechanical refrain. What grows around it is unexpected thou’: with a melody of analog synths that brings back memories of the best Detroit and layers of gelid soundscapes, the drum programming shifts to the background and the track transforms into another hypnotic and brainy experiment.
It’s a similar deal with ‘Learned’, although things are a little bit more martial and aggressive here. While the atmosphere is still crepuscular and sidereal, the drum programming maintains center stage with an old school stomping loop and an ‘in your face’ bass drum.
Max_M continues to cherish relationships with dedicated techno veterans and this Forward Strategy Group release is just another chapter in the label’s celebration of underground techno.
released 30 June 2014
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