5 out of 5
Label: Computer Club
Produced by: Arandel
I am not very smart, and sometimes I listen to 45s at 33RPMs. This happens a lot with electronic music, where maybe I’m not familiar with the artist, and don’t know what to expect, and bleeps and bloops can sound fine at either speed.
Arandel’s Turbatrix isn’t exactly a slowburn at 33RPM, but it has an intense sense of buildup across its 3 tracks (and additional ‘ambient’ version of the third) that’s rather wonderfully stretched out at the slower speed. Locus I kicks things off with a stripped down, meaty groove, that initially starts out very processed and electronic – think AFX – before getting rather Squarepusher-y organic. This then carries over into Locus II (which, to my ears, maintains the themes from part one), already amped up and ready to go but converting the squishiness of its lead-in into 16-bit gaming intensity. Locus III takes both a step back and step forward, merging the approaches into one amazing journey that shifts the whole experience into a sleek, futuristic, on-the-go sensibility.
None of this is exhausting – it’s all quite perfect, really, each track a unique and yet linked experience, simmered to an ideal runtime of around five minutes per that gives plenty of room for an effective build up and release – but the experience is nonetheless topped off by washes of ambient whale cries and electronic buzzing on Locus III (Ambient Version), which solves the problem of needing some sort of ear-blasting conclusion by going the opposite route, absolutely successfully.
…And then I listened to the thing at the right speed, and was totally blown away all over again. Everything worked just as well as before, with the intensity stepped up a degree thanks to the pepped up pace.