- At a time when the world seems eager to give talented Detroit producers their due, it's odd that someone like Kevin Reynolds can still seem like a footnote to the city's recent musical history. Even the most cursory research turns up his involvement with names like Transmat, Derrick May and Amp Fiddler. He's also known for robust live performances, but a slim discography has kept his name under the radar.
In 2011 Reynolds released the excellent Favis and Liaisons, his last solo releases, which seemed to augur well for his rate of issue. But since then he's only popped up sporadically—a track on a Love What You Feel compilation, a remix for DBA Dubs, a vocal on an Alex Israel track. Exciting, then, to find a new Reynolds record on a label as well established as Osunlade's Yoruba Records, and to hear that he's picked up the syncopated, hips-focused threads of his style.
Reynolds' output moves between rigorous mechanization and layered percussion, and this EP skews toward the latter. Fembehyahget opens with the electro-disco stomper "Dodging A Clip," but the track's arpeggiated melodies are undercut with loose hand drums and a clave, bridging the gap left after Liaisons. "Fembehyahget" is a deep tribal cut whose backbone is a stripped-back diwali riddim and a single chord. With these ingredients comes a spellbinding call-and-response between a solo vocalist and choir. The result is a meditative moment that won't likely find its equal in 2016.
"Travelled" plots a similar path, with echoey synth work and hefty samples and influences from Vinícius De Moraes & Baden Powell's "Berimbau." It's a nice incorporation of a classic (and it'd be fun to hear in a club), but it unfortunately struggles next to the stronger title track. Fembehyahget ends on "Vibe Samba," a stolid samba tool and a hunk to chew while pondering where Reynolds might head next.
A1 Dodging A Clip
B2 Vibe Samba