Stenny - Hagale

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  • Ilian Tape, in most cases, slip between what people would consider house and techno. Stenny's music is an exception. His third solo EP for Dario and Marco Zenker's label—he's also made one with Andrea, Vostok Smokescreen—is a big-room techno record, but it still carries something of the label's reputation for suppleness. Each time a kick retracts from "Hagale," it feels as if it's left a small stain behind. Over time you can hear the grime accumulate on the track, until it becomes a film between Stenny's booming drums, the soft crunch of stylus noise and the dreamy ambient vocals above it. "Ruins" and "Caveberg," despite their outsized percussion, glide rather than gallop. While a hollowed-out chord pattern gives "Caveberg" its lightness, "Ruins" is, as the title implies, a product of decay. Its grand horns are faded and sickly, but they retain an echo of past glories. "Sublimation" features the EP's boldest melody, a springy four-note loop, but they tussle entertainingly for supremacy with Stenny's explosive drums and granular textures. "Three Mile Island"'s distorted ambient passage gives Hagale a welcome pause. It's a muscular record, sure, but at its heart it's balletic not brutish.
  • Tracklist
      A1 Caveberg A2 Hagale B1 Sublimation B2 Ruins B3 Three Mile Island