- Shed does jungle.
- In considering René Pawlowitz's recent hardcore experiments for XL and this new two-track jungle 12-inch as Hoover, I thought about the scene in season seven of Seinfeld where Newman answers the door to a cop and says, "What took you so long?" Most of the house and techno Pawlowitz has made over the last 15 years, across four albums, countless EPs and roughly 20 different aliases, has bared traces of early jungle and hardcore. And yet he'd never quite gone back to the source to write a full release in these styles. "Pawlowitz should work at high tempos more often," said Mark Smith in a review of The Core, his recent EP for XL. "They give his sound a powerful shot in the arm." So how does Pawlowitz now fair in the land of jungle?
In short, pretty well. Pawlowitz, of course, knows how to create the singular tones of the best jungle. His breaks are crisp, his bass is bulky. The moods, in a classic mode, blend hope, dread and melancholia. "HOOVER A" is the rave-ready cut. It smothers the breaks with classic Shedisms—detuned chords, a disembodied female vocal sample—and generates plenty of momentum. But there's a lingering sense of hesitancy in the rhythm, as if he can't quite submit to jungle's wild nature. This is also true of the more reflective "HOOVER B," which is admittedly aiming for restraint and class, but lacks some of the fluidity and rough edges that makes tracks in this style pop. There's plenty to admire here, but a little of the mania Pawlowitz found exploring hardcore could have pushed the release from good to great.
A Hoover1 A
B Hoover1 B