March 2, 2007

Lazslo Beckett - Plowtrax Vol 1

I first met Laszlo on the dancefloor, in December. I think I was a bit bored, maybe a little tired—and definitely quite drunk. I felt that sudden urge to find a corner and curl up into a ball. But then this outrageous track faded into the mix. Wowzers. I whooped, gripped my hair, then did what any drunk trainspotting idiot would do—I marched right up to the DJ and asked “What the fuck is this?”

Turns out I was listening to “Bleep Me Daddy,” the A1 on Laszlo Beckett’s Plowtrax Volume 1 EP. And what a sound, too—something of the rambunctious “oompah” of the old Wishmountain tracks, but with the hypercollage sensibility of Akufen or Ark, and a little something extra. On the ‘phones, the density and diversity of the samples used is conspicuous—live drums, real hand claps, pitched-up toms—and over that, the crazy, malfunctioning synth equivalent of a bad balloon someone just let go of. The long track on the B continues the madness, with a frenzied, shouted vocal over the top of a ridiculously intricate collage of live drums and bass, sounding like nothing much except Beige or Lump. “Keep on Counting,” the B2, takes things down a few pegs intensity wise, continuing the same sampledelic approach, but in a more atmospheric vein not dissimilar to moments on the recent Audio Werner EP reviewed here a few weeks back.

A lot of cut-up microhouse can suffer through its inherent boisterousness (or cause suffering at least)—like a four-year old stuffed full of gummy bears, things can get really annoying really quickly. But this is easily one of the more accomplished EPs in this vein for a while. Fun fun fun ‘til your daddy takes your farming implement away. Keep you’re eyes on Laszlo, and just hope he keeps his Hand on the Plow.

Hand on the Plow / HOTP006
[Peter Chambers]