Alis: Azimuth EP
Don't Be Afraid

Who's Alis? Italo-Bulgarian Londoner Sabina Plamenova, known for her Subeena productions but now issuing tracks under a new alias that's intended to offer a more personalized and vocal-led take on her music. It's certainly punchy—the opener “You Can Try” hits hard from its first moment. Plamenova's vocalizing does give the piece a distinctive character and bright synths also add radiance and colour, but it's the track's crushing groove that really catches one's attention. The acid-house throwdown “Azimuth” is as pile-driving, especially when the drums and synth patterns kick in, while the remix of same by D'Marc Cantu shifts gears for a deep and clubby treatment that polishes the original's funky house sheen with obsessive fervor. “Imperium” revisits the trippy attack of the opener by supercharging radiant synth flourishes with a disco-styled pulse that grooves as hard as anything else on the release. A non-stop flow of energy, ideas, and imagination bursts from the EP material, making for an amazing set that leaves the listener wanting more.

February 2013