- One year in and Nina Kraviz's трип label has three double-EP compilations and a huge single to its name, not to mention an aesthetic you could spot from a mile away. Lightly psychedelic, loopy and always functional, each of those EPs has offered a peek into Kraviz's record bag: you get her own cuts alongside selections from old and new favourites. From a practical perspective, each double pack is something of a techno DJ's Swiss army knife. There are skeletal tracks to connect bigger tunes, heady diversions for those late-hours sets and, occasionally, fat hooks for peak-time as well. Now with the fourth collection, I Have A Question, things are down to a formula, but one so airtight and powerful that it would be silly to complain.
I Have A Question follows Ivan, Come On! Unlock The Box!. It feels like a companion record, and features some encore performances. K-Hand returns with "Sound 6," a sinewy slice of techno that doesn't reach the frenetic heights of "The Box" from the last one. But then Vladimir Dubyshkin sweeps in with "Hair Like String Like A Harp," a splintered and wiry number as deliciously oddball as anything we've heard on трип.
Willful weirdness seems to be the idea here. Kraviz's "Let's Do It" is a walk-in freezer of atmospherics as compelling as her cover of "I Believe I Can Fly" last month. She also appears on Roma Zuckerman's "I Have A Question," which opens the EP in absurd fashion: Zuckerman's rhythm is sickly and knuckle-dragging, while the vocal is pitched down and croaky, the stuff of bad trip scenes from cheesy movies. It would be too much if it didn't seem like just the kind of thing that works wonders in a Kraviz set.
The compilation isn't all lysergic episodes and loose marbles. Fred P and DJ Sodeyama turn in robust workouts, and the latter's "Miles Pt. 2" features yet more heavily-treated vocals to great effect. Bjarki, who is fast becoming трип's star, balances booming drums with swooning melody on "PC Muscles." Terrence Dixon shows up with another wobbly Population One track that evokes his work on The Deviant Octopus, трип's first release. By now we know what we're going to get from трип, and I Have A Question delivers it to a tee. The novelty might be gone, but what's left is another great collection of weird-ass techno curated by one of the genre's finest oddballs.
A1 Roma Zuckerman - I Have A Question
A2 Population One - Escape
B1 Nina Kraviz - Let’s Do It
B2 Bjarki - PC Muscles
C1 DJ Sodeyama - Miles Pt.2
C2 Fred P - Higher Mentalism (Edit)
D1 K-HAND - Sound 6
D2 Vladimir Dubyshkin - Hair Like String Like a Harp