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Floorplan - Shop/Learn (M-Plant)

BPO62 Label

It’s hard for me to put into words just how it felt to be alive and musically aware during the birth of the electro, house, and techno music forms – privileged, definitely but to witness something truly new forming before your very eyes, and the energy that brings with it – is to know that anything really can happen. To witness exactly what Robert Hood and Jeff Mills did to the techno genre provided, to some degree, a subset of the aforementioned feelings – but is, in many ways, no less significant.

Robert Hood

Rob Hood and Jeff Mills turned the techno sound on its head, they inverted it – some would say reinventing it – either way the results have resonated throughout electronic music history, and for many there was no looking back.

Strangely, ‘looking back’ is exactly what we’re doing here. Strangely looking back is one of the primary reasons that this very site, the one you’re currently perusing, exists. We at Timeline Music have always pushed the notion that, musically, you have to look back to know where you’re going, that multiple manifestations of the future of electronic music already exist, now, in parallel. As they have done for many decades – and we took it upon ourselves to document these ‘sonic visions’ of the future in all their glory.

BPO62 Label

So, back to ‘looking back’ - Mr Robert Hood is currently in the process of documenting his own, personal ‘sonic visions of futures passed’ with this, the latest in his Perpetual Masters series. First released in 2002 under Hood’s Floorplan pseudonym (long before Floorplan ever became a father/daughter team). Hood’s vision (pun intended, for all you trainspotters out there) of an energized, upbeat - more minimal take on techno was clearly already fully formed at this point, and here he’s laying down the formations of what was, for him, an already well excavated construction site for techno’s future.

‘Shop’ is a frenetic, at times acidic, festival of quirks and off-kilter rhythms rising and falling, coming together to form a glorious, ferociously abstract whole. Unrepentant in its single-mindedness, the veneer of a sense of absolute purpose and direction drive this purposefully discordant beast until the extended climax – this is audiologically contaminant, absolutely infectious.

‘Learn’ is equally audacious, especially when you consider when exactly this was released, hypnotic, blisteringly intense hooks and infectiously electric, nerve-shredding claps intertwine and evolve at a dizzying pace sucking the listener into a veritable maelstrom of electronically enhanced delirium.

I cannot overemphasize how good a job Thomas Heckmann did remastering this highly worthy reissue, not that the original was in any way lacking – but this is turbo-charged for the second decade of the 21st century.

I also cannot emphasize enough how definitive this sound was and still remains – copied by many, but only truly mastered by its originators, in my humble opinion.

This is an opportunity. Don’t miss it.

This one is out soon, around June 24 on both vinyl and digital formats.

Reviewed by: The Hi-Tek Lo-Life