Although Simo Cell has quickly become a fave around these parts following his stunning EPs for Livity Sound and France’s BFDM (Brothers From A Different Mother) imprint last year, I was shockingly unperturbed about his latest five-tracker when I first learned of it a month or two ago. Why? Well, as much as I might preach the post-genre gospel around these parts, I’m certainly guilty of genre reductivism, at least when it comes to reggaeton. For whatever reason, if I hear a suspended-in-triples snare dangling over a corresponding kick counter-rhythm, my mind drops down to fifth gear, assuming it won’t be taxed by the proceedings at hand. How wrong and stupid I was. Indeed, perhaps it’s just the steely sound palette presented on the stubborn rhythms of opening pair “Uranium” and “Balandbeat”—the latter’s double-time dnb-isms showcasing the producer’s considerable rhythmic dexterity in spades—but I was reconsidering my reggaeton hang-ups pretty damn fast upon queuing up the Party Five Mix EP last Friday. By the time the buffed chrome sheen of downtempo industrial-tinged dirge “A Wink Goes Wrong” rears its head at the record’s midpoint, I was keenly reminded that these days BPM itself has become an invitation for producers to explore the multiplicity of a moment, speed becoming relative through dilation. Closing with penultimate party jam “La Pulga” or the austere and awesomely-titled close closer “The Terrible Effect of Purple Drank” with its spartan kicks and throbbing bass, Party Five Mix is a much-appreciated offering from one of France’s more exciting production voices.
In other hot French bizness, Antinote HBIC Iueke continues to release decades-old heaters with the four-tracker Champion EP released on the increasingly buy-on-site Editions Gravats, which has been responsible for its own share of tripped-out 90bpm jams via the Reggaetoneras 3 cassette and tasty Clara! y Maoupa EP released over the summer. Turns out I love outré reggaeton! Shocker! Where his more 4beat-focused archival efforts have seen him parsing out the more psychedelic technoid fringes, resulting in a refreshing rhythm-melodic tribalism, this set features the producer operating at lower speeds while fractalizing his fast-multiplying polyryhthms. Employing enough distortion so that the beats are made chewy and pliant, you’re unlucky to suffer from anemia anytime soon with these four fibral and steel-cut productions
It’s junk food for dessert here today, folks! I’m not familiar with Taraval at all, but I could see his big room-friendly, LFO-tweaking thumper “Aardvark” going over well the Four Tet crowd (whose Text label released the below track).
Swooooooon. While I was unawares that teen titan Mario had continued to release music well into his twenties, it was during a trawl through the back catalog of Des Moines-born producer Bangladesh that I first found this Gucci-guesting bangerang some five years back. Boasting that marching snare that was a hallmark of much chart rap and r&b in the late 00s, “Break Up” has a sultry elasticity to even its most rigid parts that makes it pop nearly a decade on since its release. Also, kudos to Sean Garrett for blowing Mario out of the water with his sweet-n-sexy and varied second verse. Adore this jam.