Lusine: Podgelism

Given its especially elastic and fluid character, Lusine's music lends itself better than most to remix treatments. Though nominally techno, Jeff McIlwain's glitch-heavy approach is spiritually kin to dub in its obsessive focus on sonic minutiae and its open-ended production style. As such, the Seattle-based producer's groove-centric material invites others to liberally impose their individual stamps upon Podgelism's tracks, such that the same original engenders remixes that sound almost entirely unrelated. Cepia's propulsive take on “Flat,” for instance, offsets its central bass line with the staccato fire of rambunctiously snapping snares, while Dimbiman's version skips with a jazzy house swing coloured by swooping vocal accents, electric piano burble, and fusion-flavoured guitar noodling. Not to be outdone, McIlwain also tackles the tune, greasing its techno machinery with a mighty groove, plus gives “Falling In” and “Still Frame” crisp funk makeovers.

Most of the producers—A-listers all—give us pretty much what one might expect, not that that's a bad thing: Lawrence's version of “Everything Under the Sun” is as dreamily elegant as anything else in the Dial artist's oeuvre, Deru's texture-heavy “Auto Pilot” drapes its slow-burning pulse in smears and ripples, and John Tejada converts “Make It Easy” into a sleek setting of future dub-techno fueled by a low-slung bass kick. Though there's not a dud in the bunch, two in particular stand out: Matthew Dear's “Flat For You” mesmerizes, especially when Dear's baritone croon barrels forth dramatically amidst the psychotropic patterns that churn below, and Robag Wruhme's (Wighonomy Brothers) “The Stope” dazzles as a hellacious, high-velocity club burner. If there's a downside to Podgelism, it's that its release likely means a collection of all-new Lusine material won't be appearing time soon, but the remix set's ample pleasures should nicely tide the Lusine devotee over until then.

April 2007