- People talk about dub techno a lot, but "dub house" is a term thrown around less frequently. The last time a record fitting that description struck me, Strategy's Future Rock, it was 2007—almost a decade ago. Like Strategy, Akasha System's Hunter P. Thompson hails from Portland, Oregon, a place known more for its experimental musicians than its clubs. Under his ambient and new age guise Opaline, Thompson probably qualifies as an experimental musician. Akasha System proves that he's tuned into the club's energy, too.
A six-track cassette (all of Thompson's releases are cassettes), Vague Response isn't so much vague as it is hazy. Rich in reverb, the music is dreamy and blissful. While each track takes on its own smoky, melodic elegance, three in particular do so with irresistible dance floor rhythms. "Afterimage"'s glassy, floating keys feel especially euphoric, while "Caves" offers a contrast of crisp snares and velvety synths alongside energetic metallophones. "Muted"'s droning keys lift you up, while hi-hats and percussive synth hits full of delay keep a strong hold on your body.
"Akasha" translates from Sanskrit to mean different but related things: space, atmosphere, sky, elemental. It's fitting, then, that Akasha System manages to create one complete, entirely pleasurable vibe.
04. Vague Response
06. Last Call