Earlier this month, the blogosphere was blessed with a mass of new material put out by two independent websites – Life Crushed and That’s Deck. The compilation titled ‘Universal Hymns’ covers all manner of future garage, dubstep and basically anything innovative. A personal highlight, Monolith, comes from Portuguese producer Chainless. Following on from his first release,“Blue Days EP”, which came out in October 2011, Chainless again reminds us of how diverse UK-influenced dance music has become.
Monolith is a 2-minute burst of a digital nightmare. Sprinkled with 8-bit bleeps and warbling synth chirps, it falls like raining drops of green matrix-style code in a Syd Mead landscape. The gutsy grime beat moves underneath, one step at a time, like a sea-monster against the current, held together with spacious clicks and snaps. An obvious comparison to make with Chainless’ music is to London genre-defying producer Zomby, especially his latest EP, Nothing. It’s certainly clear that both producers have one goal in mind, atmosphere. Everything else is secondary.
However, it’s unfair to call Chainless just a Zomby-wannabe, Zomby himself only developed this sound recently, a huge departure from his rave-throwback sound of Where were you in ’92? Instead, we should just say that both are working on a different aesthetic plain from most, teasing out and enlivening flavours we simply have never tasted.