December 24, 2010

Deepchord presents Echospace - The Coldest Season (2008)

The Coldest Season opens with an atmospheric storm of white noise; a field recording manipulated by Modell and Hitchell. After minutes of buildup a beat unexpectedly kicks in, panning and evolving constantly. Thus marks the beginning of Echospace's first album and a new direction for dub techno.

The storm is prevalent for the entire duration of the recording, a high frequency hissing offset by killer bass hooks. Just like the minimal cover art is grey and white, the contrast is obvious and delightful for anybody 'trained' in dub techno. Special mention goes to "Aequinoxium" with the most addictive bassline I have ever heard in a track - 13 minutes of relentless sub-marine exploration. "Celestialis" is also a favourite, with glacial bursts added in the first few minutes and the bass gearing up throughout the track. It's the most progressive track on the album - most of them are content on chugging hypnotically onwards.

The only disappointment for me is the closing "Empyrean". This track sounds playful and more clubby - not a good way to end such an album as this; it's not a bad track in it's own right but it would be more appropriate somewhere else. An ambient exit, slowly peeling off the layers, would have been preferable.

This album sounds even better played during snowy days in the winter months, when the land outside your window looks like the cover art. At other times it reminds me of traversing the ocean floor due to the deep underwater sounds.

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