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minorINVENTION (Jon Dixon) 'Coda' [4EVR 4WRD]

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Having studied under the tutelage of both the legendary Underground Resistance founder (Mad) Mike Banks and Detroit’s God Father of Jazz Marcus Belgrave, Jon Dixon uses this knowledge to continually move Hi Tech Jazz forward, this EP continues in this tradition admirably.

Returning with his minorINVENTION alias, Jon Dixon delivers another EP here, ably referencing and making good use of his techno and jazz history whilst mixing it up with elements he's gathered whilst being a college music major. The result is a mixed bag of styles, effortlessly cohering into a powerful and groove laden whole, let’s get started shall we?

Kicking things off with the punchy, percussive vibes of ‘Exposition’, Jon layers icy cool pads over vox-like keys, rising and falling, but never quite peaking, teasing the listener. Vaguely tribal, chugging percussive elements underpin that oh so punchy kick to give this track some real weight, nicely juxtaposed with those winding, haunting chords.

“If I Were Kyle”, complements the opening track nicely – the drums are reminiscent, albeit with a funkier roll to them. Abstract, dissonant jazzy stabs permeate the mix, driving things, that is until those blissful keys and funky-as-you-like bassline enter the fray and we’re off into something altogether more harmonious – this is a track of contrasts, pulling the listener in two different directions until things settle down into pure funk and drums. Lovely stuff.

As Jon himself is famously quoted as saying; "I feel that it is important for me as a musician to not only continue the rich culture and history of both jazz and electronic music but to also use my knowledge, theory and experience to combine the two and take both genres to the next level!". This attitude shines through here, especially on “If I Were Kyle”, but – wait for it, we haven’t addressed the title track yet. They left the best till last, in the opinion of this reviewer, and we’ll faithfully do the same in this review.

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“MST 2022” comes on strong from the outset, jazzy flourishes and a great hook are met with almost imperceptible, airy synths sneaking in and out of the mix, all the while that insistent hook and bubbly bass funk things up beautifully. Some memorable, infectious reversed stabs give the proceedings a nice twist, all gelling nicely with abstract vocal snatches. Looking forward to hearing this one out on a rig.

“Idee Fixe” comes with a distinctly old-school techno-rave vibe on the keys but then there’s that distinctive ‘Dixon’ bass underneath delivering speaker rattling, ass swinging oomph! Tight, punchy drums hold this all together beautifully, with flair. Breezy tech-funk with hints of rave and a smattering of tech – what's not to love?

Now, so far, so great – right? Well, now we have the luscious symphony that comprises the title track “Coda”. Again, with some mad post-rave keys, but this time we have some real hi-tek soul injected into the arrangement. Massive warm pads swell and power the track with some ‘goosebump inducing’ synth-work, sublime keys build to a real crescendo, no teasing here – this one has a happy ending and, not to detract from the other tracks, this is where Jon’s brilliance shines through. I remember when I first saw this man play live, here in Brazil and I knew then just what he was capable of. I’d put money on this being a future classic. This cannot get lost in the noise, I repeat cannot!

Lovely stuff all the way with a real climactic finish – if you miss this, you miss more than you know. Beautiful. Sublime, inherently uplifting. I give you Coda peeps. Big shout out to Jon, keep on keeping on brother. X

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Reviewed by: The Hi-Tek Lo-Life