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Incoming! July 2022

Well, who'd have thought it – after a hiatus of many years we’ve seen fit to revive our old ‘Incoming!’ series for 3 main reasons; firstly, to catch up on our list of outstanding reviews; secondly, to enable us to cover a wider range of deserving artists’ work; and last but by no means least, to enable us to feature related content on gigs, DJs and other related news (so if you have anything along for us those lines email us here).

So, you can expect a fresh dose of Incoming, more or less, on a fortnightly basis (that may change as needs arise), focusing on only the finest in forward thinking sounds from past, present and future.

Right, let’s do this!

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Kicking things off this month we have the mighty Christian Smith, with the ‘Collateral EP’, which was released on UK track-spinner extraordinaire - Ben Sims’ Symbolism imprint a week or so ago. Symbolism, for the uninitiated, focuses on darker edged, more abstract techno with teeth, and this one from Christian Smith (Tronic, Drumcode, Plus 8, and many more) is by no means an exception. Collateral Force licks on hard with punchy, rumbling off kilter percussion. Tight production, aptly mastered, underpins a powerful number - one for more introspective dancefloors - laden with shimmering pads and deftly filtered drums. This is a late night/early morning, heads down/hands up number with panache. Title track ‘Collateral’ is clearly from where ‘Collateral Force’ was sourced, this however, is a more four-to-the-floor affair, with some classic jack-track style drums and an infectiously melodic riff and may be more accessible for many listeners – I love both versions, each with their own clear ethos. ‘Brava’ rounds this killer three tracker off, a simultaneously skippy yet beefy cut (how is that possible?), guaranteed to put hands in the air and feet stomping holes in the floor, a tinge of Hood style minimalism, with Chi-town, jackin’ beats. – essential.

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Released 0n 1st Aug by Gareth Whitehead’s Bullet:Dodge, Werner Niedermeier’s “Days Ahead” LP was quite the surprise when it arrived on our virtual doorstep here at Timeline Towers. I must confess that I had not been previously aware of this artist’s work, and therefore had no idea what to expect.

Having previously released on such diverse labels as Phonica, Bedrock, and Get Physical as well as having played at prestigious venues such as Fabric, London, Yellow, Tokyo, and Rex Club in Paris (alongside many others) I felt this was definitely going to be something both worth checking and extremely varied in style and form. I wasn’t disappointed. This is an accomplished range of styles ranging from ambient/electronica to bubbling electro-funk and cinematic soundscapes over twelve tracks. A deeply rich journey, from start to finish, displaying a keen sense of composition and a flair for telling real stories, this album absorbs and should definitely be consumed in its entirety upon first listen.

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Released last week on DJ 3000’s long-running Motech Records, native French man, Elyas delivers four cuts of solid, club techno with the ‘Classic EP’. Heavily influenced by the sounds of Detroit techno, Elyas here combines some of that with a tough, tribal sounding undercurrent and some deft use of vocal samples that complement, as opposed to drive, the cuts. All tracks deliver on the dancefloor, that’s unquestionable – the tracks that offer just that little bit more for this reviewer are ‘Highlife’ and ‘Classic’, both solid party trax, ‘Classic’ with its rising string sections and fiercely infectious rolling beats and ‘Highlife’ with its perpetual crescendo and bodacious hook – check it out.

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Out this weekend is the ferociously tough ‘Otto EP’ by Spain's Paula Cazanave, featuring 5 slices of absolute freaking mayhem. This is another one released on Ben Sims’ Symbolism label, who appear to be unrelenting in their output of top quality, dancefloor decimating techno of late.

The pure, unadulteratedly intense nervous energy on display here is humbling to hear. This is going to kill people, in the best possible way. All I want to know is why I’ve not heard of this impressive producer before. This is hard, yet intelligent and punishingly beautiful techno for those who can both handle it and understand it. Thoroughly recommended! I’m frothing here. The standout track for me is the devastating ‘Agoraphobia’ - this will flay the nerve endings of any innocent bystanders and instill DMT grade hallucinations in anyone hit by this on the floor. Awesome to behold.

Well, there you have it – hope you’ve found something you like here, hope to see you back here in a couple of weeks for the next instalment.

Reviewed by: The Bearded Wonder