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Faith Is Fear is Dust Science’s follow-up to last years well-received Keep the Faith compilation. It is a good mix of old and new artists, from heavyweights such as Alan Oldham, Black Dog and Surgeon to totally fresh talent like iPassenger, Quantazelle and DNCN, and travels from the atmospheric to heads down dance-floor techno.
Anthony Child better know as the mighty Surgeon, who we feel is one of the most consistently brilliant (and under-rated) players in electronic music scence. “Youknowiloveyou” is sheer, head-screwing dark twisted and full of weirdness track but still very listenable even if it’s a uncomfortable, just how we like it. Detroitrocketscience (Alan Oldham) is one of the old school Detroit players who has recorded classic tunes as HardSignal, DJ T-1000 and Signal To Noise Ratio. Here recording under Detroitrocketscience, he is in slyly ambient mood with “Babymaker”, tweaking a simple two step beat into slow motion funk mind worm.
Arne Weinberg is best known for otherworldly melodic techno but for this release he has expanded his palette and here we find him working with Niko Tzoukmanis as Onmutu Mechanicks. “Ancient Rites” is a downward-sloping slice of dark ambience that is very satisfying. Quantazelle is a fresh, female artist from Chicago with a sparkling new take on the city’s traditions. Liz McLean-Knight’s anagramatical “Mental Zilch King” is a beautiful, lively collection of cyclic mechanical pianos and distorted drums which are themselves melodic.
Something of a standout track and definitely an artist who deserves greater attention. Our latest signing, fellow Steel City man iPassenger, has given us some great melodic techno so far but this one is a real head-turner. “Unborn” has skittering mid-tempo rhythms and delightful gamelan keyboards and a terrific hook. Watch out for more from this artist on Dust Science. Another new face, this time from over the Pennines in Manchester, is the hugely talented DNCN. His “Dust to Dust” does all kinds of things to your head when played loud – that shimmering, fizzing bass is just too much.
The Black Dog’s track “Floods” has proved hugely popular at recent gigs and marks a bit of a departure to their usual recognised sound. Presented here as the v1 re-edit, it’s still as troubling, obsessed and dark as ever. “Wire Tap” by The 65D Mavericks is the perfect follow-up – sweetly infectious synth washes and skipping beats make this a lush 3am number. Fabrice Lig, takes it slightly darker with the infectious “Access Denied”.
Betaville are Lee Graves, better known as the fantastic Derailleur, and Varial Records boss Mat Carter, and the result is “Surface Tension”, a killer slice of twisted electronics, emotions and cinematic qualities that Dust has always loved about both artists. But perhaps the biggest shock of the album is Slit – a totally unknown new female artist from Sheffield. Alone and Cutting is a brilliant piece of shimmering industrial ambience from a very promising new artist.
Stepping up a gear, Regis and Female’s “C/Chaos” is a strikingly effective slice of dark, funky techno recorded live at the Orbit club, Brummy techno at it’s very best. “Firebomb” is a thoroughly road-tested System 23 dub that nods at the Berlin sound and stick the jacks up to modern sound of Sheffield. Watch out for new EP from System 23 very soon. Closing at the top of the speedometer is Carl Taylor “Scanner”, here in it’s Auteform mix. It’s an awesome full-fat techno monster and will pulverize your head on the dancefloor.