Benza - Retrofuturism (Sonic Dragon)

review

Author: Damion
Date: Jun 16, 2005
Views: 2346

Date: Jun 16, 2005
Text: Damion
Taken from: www.psyreviews.com
Vote: 7/10

Benza’s style is slinky and organic, unhurried and more comfortable in your home or car CD player than bashing tunes out to a sweaty crowd of on-the-pull party idiots. Retrofuturism is tasty, end of: a lo-fi, almost garage-band sound couples with brave and searching structures and morphing melodies, making for a pretty damn fine package. Isis & Osiris is a slinky beast, taking in easy BPM’s and adding intricate and imaginative melody lines across the top. The patterns unfold in an oldskool-kaleidoscope sort of way, and the overall effect is of damn nice, gentle-pitch tune that’s in no hurry to go anywhere. The Ascension Of Smeagol picks things up nicely, a wonderfully-produced tune that is rolling, fuzzy, soaring and emotive without ever getting near overboiling point, despite a bloody clever and rinsing breakdown and drop combo which threatens to take everything soaring. Duck And Cover is instantly more lively, feeding off the energy that’s just been built, and it drops into a seriously tasty early run that gets the sparks flying. A breakdown sees it pick up a kickass line which then drops to really rattle your dangleberries, with shades of oldskool bouncing around the rafters like cute young pixies on vintage mushroom wine. Escalation Of Tensions is more broody, a gnarlier tune using offpitched melodies and some pretty grating sounds to build into a curious beast: a harsh piece of nighttime trance that isn’t, with beats so laconic they don’t seem to notice the sounds flying around them. Last Of The V8 Interceptors is more like Benza’s older stuff, sounding very Australian with its chunkmonkslinkblink percussive bottom end and shuffling sounds over the top; also Australian, but in a different way, is Depth Perception which has the same chords as Kylie’s Can’t Get You Out Of My Head (to me, anyway.) It’s a gorgeous tune th ough (Benza’s I mean, not Kylie’s), a tecchy progressive feel gets massaged by fluffy and fluid topends, and simple but significant melodic hooks. Soiled has a scifi-disco rhythm section, and a laser-phaser gun battle happening over the top in a tune you imagine Twikki out of Buck Rogers would produce if he got it on with a Nord, while The Pipe Doctor takes a slomo oldskool groove, adds some renegade snares and the odd guitar, and lets the acid get to work. The Twin Complex Of Dawn is, as the name may suggest, a morning track but bloody hell does he do well with it. Acid bounces, sawn-of melodies rise and fall, it wouldn’t be out of place on Sundance. As Captain Senior Mouse closes the album in able downtempo dubstyle, it’s a definite end to a definite journey. Impressive stuff, defiantly different and well worth a sniff.

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