Words on contemporary releases. Seeking to offer an honest description of works which manage to exist in their own space and time.
Kaltès & Nene H.– Protest EP [Eotrax]
Reviewed by Harry Castle
The Eotrax Label has been sitting in the shadows of the underground techno scene since it first came to reality at the end of 2016. As Eomac’s curated label, it allows the artist to bring together various composers and musicians to create tension ridden depictions of ideas and elements entrenched in cultural, historical and thoroughly mystical concepts. The first release on the label was one of Eomac’s personal creations which was born on a trip to the ancient city of Teotihuacan near Mexico City. This track was made as a calling for us to seek out the animalistic nature that dwells, just below the surface, within us all. There is a recurring theme in Eomac’s solo work as well as his curation on Eotrax of seeking to connect the works to a time and place. The effect is otherworldly, emotive and drags the listener into the mind of the producer. This new release on Eotrax adds 2 up and coming Berlin based artists to the labels’s roster, it also includes a brooding textured remix from a familiar face, LAIR; as well as a percussive hypnotically driven onslaught from Christina Sealey, one half of Orphx.
Nene H. made waves throughout the industrial scene last year with her “Fountain of fire” set at the Atonal festival. Kaltès on the other hand is the organizer of Berlin’s female:pressure parties in Tresor. These two women are breaking through the noise and societal constrictions. Their eclectic sound and vision are a testament to their achievements so far and a foreshadow in to what we can expect for the future. The haunting breaths are a central theme to this release, yet they don’t cry in angst or disgust they are purposeful and powerful. A call to arms for groundbreaking, industrial techno that doesn’t fit into a distinct category with ease.
The first track by the duo comes to us as the aptly named Resist. Piercing synth textures that distort, engender thoughts of cold dark and open spaces. Shrill cries cut through this space as the growling compressed kick drum builds until distorted percussive elements and bellows of impending doom bring the built up tension to a close. LAIR’s rendition of Resist is an evocative trip through ambient grain with rough and deep drum sequences that seem to sit in the background as the heretic riffs tear at our sensibilities.
Chopped up rhythms that generate swinging industrial atmospherics are distinct to the second track of the release by Kaltes and Nene H. Once again the track’s underlying bellowing call keep the listener in rigid captivity until the percussive elements begin to take more claim over the rest of the track. Yet, this track seems to portray something a deeper. A certain disgust or anger at the state of current affairs or perhaps a need to express what cannot be expressed. Christina Sealey’s glitched EBM like remix trudges forward with deep squelches of a monosynth while metallic sequences float through the soundscape. Hypnotic and brooding, Sealey showcases that Canadian industrial intricacy that Orphx have become renowned for.
This is a dark and provocative release that takes no prisoners. It showcases the prowess of the artists involved as well as Eomac’s never ending connection to dark sonic landscapes and purposeful expression.