- Takaaki Itoh's Disciplinary Synthetics EP has a nifty balance between new and old school sounds. There's the deep and psychedelic side of tracks like "Wisher" and "Obliger," modern-sounding techno tunes that would hypnotise a dance floor. Then there's "Anagrammer," a blistering weapon that couples the rawness of '90s UK techno with precision percussion and a well-sculpted low-end. It's no surprise that Itoh can blend eras and sounds so naturally: he's been producing for over 20 years.
The EP's highlight, "Wisher," was picked up by plenty of DJs, and is among RA's most-charted tracks of January. A fairly standard but effective tool, its kick drum sets a steady pace among a collage of synths that whir and bleep. The sound will be familiar to followers of Northern Electronics and Semantica Records, labels that favour depth over immediacy. While the syncopated "Obliger" hovers in a similar zone, the stomping "Anagrammer" is more forceful, channelling golden-era Birmingham techno with its elastic lead synth. Funky and ice-cold, it recalls the intensity of early Regis tracks like "Allies" and "Sand." Thanks to a balance between old and new, Disciplinary Synthetics nails a timeless—albeit familiar—aesthetic.