- All we know about Skee Mask is that he's from Munich—just like Ilian Tape co-founders Dario and Marco Zenker. That detail is not exactly surprising. Skee Mask's debut EP, Serum, is very much in line with what Ilian Tape has been pushing recently: spacey, angular techno that isn't married to the 4/4 pulse. Following releases from Dario Zenker, Jonas Kopp and Sciahri, it's the fourth part in the label's slightly spacier ITX series. For my money, it's the best of the four, and one of Ilian Tape's most immersive record's yet.
Serum makes a point of jumping around from track to track. "Cyclo" and "Reduct Live" both flirt with breakbeats, their submerged rhythms riding syncopated kick drums while dubby chords flicker overhead. Both versions of the title track are dub techno with fantastic kicks and thick, mercurial chords, but they work at dramatically different tempos—the "Session 1" mix clocks in at three minutes and 130 BPM, while "Revive" is 144 BPM and finishes in less than two minutes. "Torpor 12" is the record's most conventional track but also its best, with dreamy chords gliding over a brisk 4/4 beat. Heavy, atmospheric and stylistically bold, it's a well-rounded EP that's hard to get bored of.
A2 Torpor 12 (Session)
B1 Reduct Live
B2 Serum (Session 1)
B3 Serum (Revive)