- A new vision of techno from the self-proclaimed Queen Of Hell.
- Jasmine Infiniti calls herself the Queen Of Hell. She's said her music is about "taking hell and having fun with it." She's described the experience of living as a black trans woman as hell, too. Her DJ sets, solo or with her New World Dysorder crew, are often punishing, mixing techno with ballroom, hardstyle and gabber. It would be easy to pigeonhole her as an arbiter of all things dark, but that's not the entire picture—that would forget the "having fun" part. Infiniti embodies New York City's young, black techno scene, one where eras, styles and genres are thrown together into an irreverent blend of dread and joy. Infiniti's music especially, with its steel-toed kick drums and panic-attack synths, reminds me of early '90s Detroit techno, back when speed and strength didn't necessarily sound macho. BXTCH SLÄP, her debut album, harks back to this era with a 21st century touch, highlighting techno's euphoric potential as well as its dark underbelly.
Most of the tracks on BXTCH SLÄP have pitched-down vocals, jittery melodies and a generally goth atmosphere. But there's a giddiness in the way Infiniti programs drums—take the sprightly bounce of "Well Fair," or the tumbling snares in "Ghettro," which sound like they're doing somersaults over the kick drum. The stunning opener is bounding breakbeat techno that sounds like it was carved out of a drum & bass tune.
BXTCH SLÄP is as aggressive as it is ornate. The icy synth arpeggio on "Hott" is undeniably pretty. "Downhill" has a morphing synth lead that sounds like an orchestra tuning up. Infiniti can go from Robert Hood to Gas in the same track, another part of the duality that makes her music so rich.
Just as the fiery Queen Of Hell persona doesn't encompass Jasmine Infiniti's art, her tracks don't tell the whole story either. She's a force of nature as a DJ, and it's worth seeking out her sets to see what makes her such a powerful presence in New York and beyond. Like Terre Thaemlitz, she recognizes how the club can be as much of a trap or a broken promise as it can be an escape from reality. Or it can be all those things at once, a truth that lurks around every dark corner on BXTCH SLÄP.
01. BXTCH SLÄP (Intro)
07. YES, SIR
09. BE READY
10. WELL FAIR
11. <3 (HEART)
13. SHONUFF (Bonus Track)