Various - Rhythm Trainx Vol. 1

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  • Rhythm Trainx Vol. 1 is conspicuously short on grand musical statements. But try as it might to be purely functional, it can't help but impress. Running Back's latest brings together six untitled beat tracks from at least five veterans and someone called Blank Spanner. Even with all the showy bits stripped out of the mix, it seems unlikely these tracks will be relegated to the interstices of club sets. They're testaments to craft and functionality, but also they're much more than that. Like every cut on this release, Manuel Tur's contribution is labeled only by its tempo ("121 BPM"). Without a melody to fall back on, it builds an ultra-lean anthem out of clever rhythmic play and effects trickery. You can't hum along with percussion clicks or pitched blasts of noise, but you may find yourself trying. Radio Slave overwhelms us with drums. I'm not sure any more could be packed into the track, and you can almost hear the individual hits vying for position on each beat. It's exhausting but thrilling—the one bit of color thrown in, a woozy yelp, perfectly sums up the effect. The mysterious Blank Spanner's workout ratchets up heart rates in similar fashion, though dubby delays cool the mix like a drenching sweat. I:Cube provides the much-needed chillout, winding down with spacious handclaps set to a woozy 109 BPM. Only two tracks actually feel as workmanlike as advertised: Disco Nihilist's straightforward drum-machine jam and Âme's economical house loop. Running Back has still left us spoiled for riches.
  • Tracklist
      A1 Manuel Tur - 121 BPM A2 I:Cube - 109 BPM A3 Blank Spanner - 126.5 BPM B1 Disco Nihilist - 124 BPM B2 Âme - 119 BPM B3 Radio Slave - 122 BPM