VA: Echocord Jubilee Comp.

Echochord's Echochord Jubilee Comp comes about as close to nirvana-on-earth for dub-techno devotees as could possibly be imagined. Not only does it include exclusives by Brendon Moeller, Resoe, Stephen Hitchell, Fenin, Mikkel Metal, and other highly regarded producers, it also features tracks by Fluxion and Deadbeat, which immediately makes it an indispensable collection for fans of the genre. The collection arrives nine years into Echochord's run and comes after forty-nine vinyl and nine CD releases, so there's just cause for celebration.

Fluxion gets things underway with nine sublime minutes of sound sculpting called “Tides”—think deep stepping groove, rumbling undertow, and brooding atmosphere and you're in the right ballpark. It's pure time capsule material if you're a dub-techno head, and sets the bar almost ridiculously high for whatever comes after. That proves to be no problem whatsoever for Quantec whose “My Safe Harbour” is more than up to the challenge in rolling out its own echo-drenched swirl of stabbing chords and hard-grooving pulse. Moeller's “Farmhouse” likewise stands out for its pounding swing and agile bass patterns, and any listener desirous of high-energy dub-techno music will find more than enough of it in Moeller's cut. Hitchell's similarly amped-up “For Convextion” brings an exuberant boogie-funk spirit to the compilation that won't be denied, and listeners with an insatiable appetite for liquidy chords, thudding bass throb, and locomotive grooves need look no further than Luke Hess's “Kratos” and Resoe's “Tanzfieber.” My favourite of the ten offerings, however, has to be “House of Vampires,” by Deadbeat who, ahead of the curve as usual, throws down a fabulously funky slice of skanky bass science in which melodica splinters and a panther-like bass line ride an impossibly tight and snappy groove. The track's sheer brilliance shows Scott Monteith's Deadbeat project operating in fine form despite having been in operation since 2000.

May 2011