- Hodge has been on fine form lately, having carved out a distinctive space in Bristol's post-Livity Sound landscape. With this turn for the Hotline label, he presents his style at, if not its most striking, then certainly its most refined. These tracks may lack the bolder junglist clatter of "Renegades" or "Resolve"—or, indeed, the panic-inducing intensity of "Amor Fati"—but beneath their sleeker contours lies a rewarding character and playfulness.
"Flashback" is particularly pared back, consisting of little more than a single shimmering arp and a cross-rhythmic groove of the Livity school—rolling, muscular, implacable. These elements are arranged into a finely wrought linear structure. If you were asked to imagine a Bristol-school take on tunnel-vision techno it would be this. "Mind Games" hits the pleasure centres faster, bringing to mind some of Hotline's more boisterous material (this, remember, is the label responsible for Kahn & Neek's incendiary "Backchat"). Still, Hodge keeps its soca-tinged groove and ping-pong bell-tones on a tight leash. We know he can be wilder, but here he shows he can be disciplined, too.
A1 Mind Games