This is for anyone who's a fan of Sasha - I just recieved it from Muzik via email...
NEW SASHA ALBUM: WORLD FIRST TRACK-BY-TRACK PREVIEW!
It's one of the most eagerly awaited dance music albums of all time - the debut artist album from Alexander Coe, aka Sasha - and we didn't want you to have to wait a moment longer. As soon as we've got hold of the album we're telling you about it.
This is the world's first track-by-track preview of one of the biggest albums of the year. Released on August 5th through BMG, Sasha's 'Airdrawndagger' avoids pure dancefloor fodder in favour of a more understated, almost chilled out approach. It melds his love of breakbeat and soundtrack work and pays tribute to some of his biggest influences.
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1. Dremples 1:23
A short burst of shimmering, bleepy, analogue soundscape clocking in at just under a minute and a half. A warm-up to get your ears attuned.
2. Mr Tiddles 4:53
As with much of the album, 'Mr Tiddles' seems to pay tribute to an era in the early Nineties when artists such as Spooky and The Drum Club were at their peak. A cool, understated five minute introduction that unfurls with all the production manners of Future Sound Of London circa 'Lifeforms', it's bass-heavy with loads of delay, like a Germanic minimalist cathedral of synthetic sound supplemented with massive, washing synth sounds.
3. Magnetic North 5:17
A bass pattern rises out of the darkness. A flurry of shuddering drums and shifting, haunting keys. This is where things move subtly up a gear with a glimmer of a nu-skool breaks rhythm track.
4. Cloud Cuckoo 8.26
A pure ethereal soundtrack with menacing keys is split by a tough West Coast drum pattern with an up-front snare sound. More deep, brooding, bass-heavy breakdowns with cascading synth patterns filtering down. Ends with a Jan Hammer/Miami Vice-style drum stab and melts directly into. . .
5. Immortal 4:54
A brooding, buzzing nu-skool bassline underpins this downbeat slice of breakbeat. Hovering around the 110 bpm mark, the track is covered in crisp, cut-up hi-hats (sounding like high-pitched scratching) with a rising and descending 'horror movie' hook line the creates a lot of tension. Includes another rippling bass breakdown. Wouldn't sound amiss in a Meat Katie DJ set.
6. Fundamental 9:13
Dark, robotic breakbeat atmospherics with a touch of the Timo Maas in the bassline and lots of twisted filters. Morse code bleeps play in the upper frequencies. Really kicks in round the six minute mark and rides the same dark riff for a further three minutes. A Mixmaster Morris-ish take on current fixations with all things electro.
7. Boileroom 7:04
A looped-backwards brassy sample cycles round before exploding into a classic Sasha breakbeat - lots of space and contrast between pounding low notes and trebly rhythm track. High bell notes play against twisted electronic noises further down. A BT-style crescendo around the two minute mark reminds of the days when Sasha used to cane 'Embracing The Sunshine'.
8. Bloodlock 7:53
The track that's most akin to 'Xpander'. A floor-shaking bass rumble growls along as more synth arpeggios cascade down. A hi-hat pattern plays left and right in the speakers and a marching pattern plays towards the end, rising in frequency. Very Orbital-ish and something of an updated tribute to the early sound of Sven Vath's Eye-Q imprint.
9. Requiem 6:08
Like incidental music from Bladerunner, this track betrays Sasha's love of movie soundtrack dynamics and looks to Vangelis for epic inspiration. Heavy delay cuts up an almost guitar-sound melody that descends into computer game bleeps that in turn fade to echo.
10. Golden Arm 5:45
A cute melody cycles round before the 4/4 bass kicks in with a very 'Euro' rhythm pattern. The bass and deep synth are linked in a rising and falling cycle while echoing noises play beneath. The closest thing to a pop song on the album.
11. Wavey Gravy 7:29
'Wavey Gravy' was previewed on Sasha's boat party at The Miami Winter Music Conference and is the album's most obvious contender for first single. Like Kevin Beber reworking one of Hybrid's more symphonic excursions, this seven-minute cut is built on a strong rim-shot rhythm pattern. Evoking images of sunshine falling through leaves, this is another track with a touch of Vangelis about it, with a blissful, swooping synth melody that plays to fade.
Look for a full review of Sasha's album in Muzik out July 10th.
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PLUS: FSOL, Ils, Andrew Weatherall, Mr C, Classic Oakey remixes, DJ effects units and new album verdicts for Miss Dynamite, Steve Lawler and Layo & Bushwacka!
MUZIK MAGAZINE - dedicated to dance music
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This is probably my Fave album of 2002. Simply a masterpiece with every song flowing into the next keeping the mood nice and mellow. The highlights would have to be Fundamental and Golden Arm for me though they are all really really good.
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