- Here it is, #4 in Ann Aimee's dependable series of 12-inches, with Skudge snatching the A1 spot. Considering the simplicity of their approach, it's amazing the duo have managed to achieve such a recognisable sound. Perhaps that's the key though; their attempts at distillation tend to result in purity, rather than the blandness struck by others. They certainly skirt dangerously close to the latter, which is perhaps why some people reject praise for the Swedes. "Pollution" is likely to be similarly divisive. It's a triumph of basics: A hollow wood-block noise forms the question, and a delayed synth twang the answer. There's little else they need; just various bits of percussion for emphasis.
"When It Appeared" cements Conforce's place as one of 2011's most consistently brilliant producers. Imagine a tiny drop of water falling from the roof of an underground cavern. Triple the speed of the sound, and you have some approximation of the pattering notes at the heart of this placid-but-frantic cut. There's plenty going on, but the sounds are all so minute and pretty that the inherent tension is completely blunted. Even its gaggles of heavy Roland toms can't create much commotion.
With "Plaisir Interdit," Cosmin TRG offers something similarly distinctive. In contrast with Skudge's sharply-defined hats, here the Romanian shrouds his brittle percs with a barely-there hissing. It's like they're constantly being misted with a spray bottle. Constructed using a fuzzy and super-catchy hook, it vacillates wildly with the use of filters. In a rare outing from his home at Fachwerk, Sascha Rydell turns in the final piece; a deep, meditative cut which lives up to its title, "Rainy Days." Its electronic piano pulse is like rain pelting the roof and the rumbles which appear every so often sound too far off to be truly menacing. Like Skudge's piece, it runs the gauntlet between entrancing and tedious, but Rydell's crisp percussion keeps things moving enough to tip it to the former.
A1 Skudge - Pollution
A2 Conforce - When It Appeared
B1 Cosmin TRG - Plaisir Interdit
B2 Sascha Rydell - Rainy Days